This Movie is: Not Rated
Before I talk about the movie, I want to say how much I admire Amber Benson. She is an amazing young woman. She was only in her mid-twenties when she wrote, directed, produced and starred in this movie. Amber managed to make this movie for under $100,000 and did it without traditional financing. She used money she earned from her “day job” (playing Tara on Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and found creative ways of raising money through the internet. Even though it may cost more to get a hold of this DVD I think it is worth it to help support a promising up and coming filmmaker.
This movie is about a young woman named Chance (Amber Benson). She is outspoken, strong willed and free spirited. She lives off a trust fund (so no job necessary). Likes to party and experiment sexually. However, she hasn’t had much luck in the love department (as witnessed when we meet some previous boyfriends and one night stands). Through various vignettes we also get to know her roommate Simon, her crazy parents and other assorted interesting individuals in Chance’s life.
Simon (James Marsters) is a sweet, vulnerable guy (with a bit of a time obsession); that has been crashing on Chance’s couch for about a year. He has a boring job as a telemarketer (selling long distance telephone service) which he isn’t very good at. James is probably best known as playing Spike on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”. He does a great job here and it’s fun to see him play a different character. He is very endearing as Simon. A couple of his scenes not to be missed are when he puts on lipstick and kisses a mirror (very hot) and when he is wearing make-up and a dress (very amusing).
The fact that James and Amber had worked together on “Buffy” really shows. They are totally comfortable with each other on screen and come across as real friends. Teasing each other and bickering but also providing emotional support when needed. The interactions between the two of them are definitely my favorite parts of the movie.
Andy Hallett plays Jack, a guy that Chance has a crush on. You might not recognize him without the green makeup and horns, but he was Lorne on “Angel” (the loveable demon that owned a karaoke bar). His part in this movie is not huge, but it is very memorable. He has two lovely scenes, one with Amber and one with James. He is especially adorable in the one with James. On a sad note, Andy passed away less than a month ago. After a long battle with heart disease, he was only 33. Andy had such a spark and could really light up the screen. He will be greatly missed.
The story is told in a non-linear fashion. At times Chance serves as a narrator, talking directly to us through the screen. I know it may sound a bit odd, but there is a wandering singer/musician that shows up several times throughout the movie. I ended up really liking him and thought he was a fun addition. Definitely listen to the lyrics, as they go along with the story. Side note; Joss Whedon wrote the lyrics to the first song in the movie “Burn Me Down”.
Some of my favorite quotes:
Chance – “That’s Simon he’s a nice guy. Too nice and for precisely that reason he gets his dick dragged all over the place.”
Simon – “Yes, yes I’m wearing pants.”
Johnny – “Just an epiphany man, it’s this whole tofu cheese thing.”
Simon – “What did you do to him?”
Chance – “What do you mean me?”
Simon – “I see a grown man sobbing like a baby and I know that the only person to do it is you.”
Chance – “I like my demons. I consider them close personal friends. In fact we enjoy each other’s company immensely.”
Chance – “Four words. He is a god.”
Simon – “You seem to have a lot of luck conceiving while in transit.”
Chance – “Don’t get me wrong. I love my mother, I just wish she’d go away.”
Desiree – “I was calling to check the time.”
Simon – “I love calling time!”
Danielle Benson, Amber’s sister, did all of the artwork featured in the movie.
Watch for outtakes as the credits play. Ok, the thing that Amber can do with her eyes (moving them independently from each other) just kinda freaks me out.
Following is additional information about the show that contains spoilers. If you don’t want to be spoiled don’t read any further.
The scene when Simon and Chance are trying to scare off one of her one-night stands is a lot of fun. On the spot, they make up a rather detailed story of how they met in a psychiatric hospital and “bonded over a shared love of barbiturates and obsessive-compulsive behavior”. It shows how close they are and how they are on the same wavelength.
As I mentioned before I really liked the scene with Simon and Jack. It’s awkward, a little strange and kind of sweet all at the same time. It’s great how Chance butts in with a narrative, giving her side of the story, during Simon’s rant about her. Jack is totally adorable when he is flirting with Simon.
After Simon and Chance finally sleep together there is an interesting flip of the stereotypical roles you would usually see. Simon viewing it as something special (making love) and Chance viewing it more like a one-night stand (or just a f*ck).