In Search of a Midnight Kiss
(Alex Holdridge, US, 2007) 90min
This article is from 2007.
Any film that invokes Woody Allen’s Manhattan in its opening moments is asking for invidious comparison. Allen captured late 70s bohemian New York with what seemed like time capsule astuteness. Alex Holdridge’s film does no more than suggest what a couple of listless, youthful lives look like in Los Angeles on New Year’s Eve.
Wilson (Scott McNairy) has been kicked into action after being caught masturbating furiously over a Photoshopped picture of his flatmate’s naked girlfriend. Both flatmate and girlfriend think Wilson needs to go out into the world, and online dating is the answer, and Vivian (Sara Simmonds) the result.
Like a slicker, more streamlined version of Andrew Bujalski’s ‘mumblecore’ masterworks Funny Ha Ha and Mutual Appreciation, Holdridge's film blows the characters’ problems out of all proportion, and then expects ironic self-appraisal to bring them back to size. This doesn’t give the film much texture or depth, and the music is constantly prodding our feelings, but it’s always likable, uses LA locations well, and may be the sleeper hit of this year’s Festival. (Tony McKibbin)
Filmhouse, 623 8030, 16 Aug, 9.45pm & 17 Aug, 4.30pm, both £7.95 (£5.50).