MOVIE SYNOPSIS: Audrey is a very unique and very funny female-driven comedy — like nothing movie going audiences have seen before. Taking place in real-time, the story takes us through a little over an hour and a half of a young woman’s (played by Sybil Temtchine, Ten Benny, Restaurant) day as she waits and waits and WAITS in a lovely restaurant for Gene (Jonathan Chase) to arrive for their critical third date.
As the clock ticks away and Gene is nowhere to be found, Audrey is swept up into an incredibly rich journey through her life as her insecurities and inner demons comically wreak havoc on her. Forced to face her deepest fears by circumstance — both real and hilariously unreal —Audrey finds the strength and courage she never imagined she had.
It’s always a joy when our information-age surprises you and delivers an unexpected gift in the form of an unexpected album from your favourite artist, or a book you didn’t know the author you adore had written, or in the case of Audrey, directed by Dean Pollack and written by Pollack and Temtchine, a delightfully charming movie that takes a totally out-of-the-box approach to the perils of dating and romance, enters your social media stream when you least expect it.
This totally unique film came to my attention thanks to a tweet from the people behind an upcoming movie Such Good People, due to begin production shortly in the USA, whose executive producer Richard Bever is one of the producers behind Audrey, which is based on a short film called Piece A’ Cake (by long standing collaborators Dean Pollack and Sybil Temtchine, who also, of course wrote, and directed, and in Temtchine’s case, star in its much longer successor).
And it has been put together in a thoroughly unique fashion too with Temtchine bypassing marquee actors and the usual convoluted funding methods in favour of starring in the film herself, and seeking funding directly from a diverse group of 200 female business leaders (all of whom had written a book that touched on female empowerment in some form), 75% of whom chose to support her financially or by introducing her to organisations like 85 Broads, headed by founder Janet Hanson, who became an enthusiastic sponsor.
She also attracted the attention of a number of actors such as Edward Asner, who plays Walt, the owner of the newsstand frequented by both Audrey and Gene, who is the one responsible for bringing the two would-be lovebirds together in the first place.
Audrey also stars Robert Curtis Brown, Ed Quinn, Jeanette O’Connor, Ethan Phillips and Helena Mattsson all of whom have a part to play in driving our possibly abandoned young heroine to the brink of a life-changing epiphany as the worst of all possible waiting scenarios play out including spotting her unfaithful ex-boyfriend proposing to his one-time ridiculously young mistress and running into her boss.
If it can go wrong it does, and as the zaniness and unfortunate coincidences ramp up, Audrey is pushed to the point where she either caves in and admits defeat, or rallies and seizes back the power to live the life she wants from the welter of neuroses besetting her.
It all adds up to a movie so real, and appealing, that it took just one viewing of the trailer and I was smitten.
Totally, utterly smitten.
How could you not be?
Who hasn’t been in Audrey’s position – sitting and waiting, wondering if this person you’re waiting for is The One, the person who will be with you for the rest of your life, and make all those nightmarish dates, and interminably dull dates, and pointless conversations with a host of no-hopers, worthwhile?
While her imagination runs amuck and all sort of crazy and also totally reasonable possibilities are countenanced, you realise that she isn’t crazy at all – she is YOU.
You have been there, wondering and waiting, fingernails nibbled to the bone, a thousand-and-one neuroses jumping with heady abandon all over that flickering flame of romantic hope.
What excites me is how perfectly they have captured her angst and dismay while avoiding the trap of turning her into a neurotic oddball and keeping her as an immensely likeable, quirky individual that anyone can relate to.
And one who refuses to be defined by the treatment meted out to her by others and who seizes back the initiative to live the life she wants to lead on her own terms.
The movie is slated to open in September this year and you can rest assured, in a bistro if you want to, that I will be there on opening day happy to spend time with what looks like one of the most charming, and meaningful, movies of the year.