On Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of movies on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s review: A BUDDY STORY (Gravitas).
A BUDDY STORY
Usually knowing how to swim is like a prerequisite for jumping into a lake.
By Kate Asche Wilson
When I envisioned my future I saw myself as Queen of the universe. I lived on Mars and had a pet alien named Mike, and I was married to Jonathan Taylor Thomas. This was my dream. Everyone has dreams, but one of the most popular dreams is growing up to be a musician (or a Rock star depending on your hair). Now when you don’t grow out of this phase, and actually dedicate your life to your music, you come to realize that being an artist actually really sucks.
A BUDDY STORY is a film for artists by artists, but will resonate with anyone who has ever had a dream, and knows what it’s like to fight for it. If you find artists to be whiny and self-indulgent then don’t watch this, you’ll probably enjoy the musical stylings of Alvin and the Chipmunks better.
But if you worship Jack Kerouac,
and frequent beatnik poetry clubs then get ready,
this is the perfect film for you.
Written and Directed by Marc Eribaum, A BUDDY STORY follows our hero Buddy Gilbert (Gavin Bellour), on the road, as he travels from venue to venue playing his music, and waiting for that one fateful phone call that will change his life forever. Susan (Elisabeth Moss) is his soft-spoken neighbor who is struggling with her present and past issues with abuse, and tags along with Buddy on his tour of the northeast.
While Buddy describes his life as being perpetually desperate, Susan admits that she doesn’t even remember a time that she was okay. Together they fix each other in ways that only two lost souls can, and take the audience on such a fantastically endearing adventure that you can’t help but fall in love with them.
Now it’s time to group my thoughts into my three favorite categories: The Good, The Bad, and The Heartwarming Hilarious.
Buddy and Susan’s relationship. On the surface this story is about Buddy, and his personal journey as a struggling musician. Susan adds a whole new level of growth to Buddy’s character and proves that this story is more about their relationship than anything else. Gavin Bellour is absolutely perfect as Buddy with his awkward nuances and good guy attitude. Honestly, if you don’t like this guy you probably don’t have a soul.
Elizabeth Moss / A BUDDY STORY
Taking a break from advertising, Elisabeth Moss finds herself in this film being absolutely fantastic. These two capture Buddy and Susan so well that from the beginning you just want them to run off into the sunset singing songs of magic while unicorns run beside them. Notable mention to Gavin Bellour for co-composing the original music. It’s so good that it makes you want to drop everything, grab the nearest guitar, and grow your hair out.
You want more time with the characters. Really guys my only issue with this film is that there isn’t more of it. I loved the subtlety in the writing and that we never truly know what happened to Susan or why Buddy can’t get a record contract, but that’s what makes it so realistic.
I could spend hours with these characters and
I hate you Mark Eribaum for depriving me of that!
The Heartwarming Hilarious:
From cross-dressing to turtle bromances this film is filled with hilarious moments that mesh so well with all of the emotional intensity. There’s even a scene at a biker bar where Buddy threatens these huge tattooed badass men with show tunes. Little does he know they love Annie and their rendition of “Tomorrow” is something that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
This film doesn’t glorify being a musician. It shows the raw reality of trying to make it as an artist, and anyone who has struggled with their passion and dream will relate to this story. Go watch it. Right now. Seriously what are you still doing here?
Personal side note: Jonathan Taylor Thomas if you read this give me a call. We can still conquer Mars together.
Kate Asche Wilson is a new contributing writer to On Demand Weekly. She is a graduate from the Dodge College of Film and Media Arts at Chapman University where she received a BA in Screenwriting. In her spare time Kate likes to take long walks on the beach, and watch telenovelas. Follow her on Twitter @KATEDOESLIFE!
A BUDDY STORY (Gravitas) is in your local cable movies on demand section.
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