"Film Fest" series opens with a Kiss

The Memphis Brooks Museum of Art and Indie Memphis kicks off a joint series "Film Festival Favorites" with In Search of a Midnight Kiss, an indie romantic comedy shot in Los Angeles. The film is nominated for an Independent Spirit Award this year for best feature made for under $500,000, and it won the Grand Jury Award at last year's Florida Film Festival. One of the things it offers a Memphis audience is that it confirms the quality of the local filmmaking scene.

Writer/director Alex Holdridge's film takes place on that most apocalyptic of days to not be in love, New Year's Eve. Unemployed screenwriter Wilson (Scoot McNairy) has been without a girlfriend for six years. Not wanting to watch another ball drop without getting some action, Wilson places a personals ad on Craigslist ("Misanthrope seeks misanthrope"). The first nibble comes from Vivian (Sara Simmonds); when Wilson and Vivian meet at a coffee shop, she keeps him on his heels with her brash behavior but sticks around out of longing for the cosmic promise of the new year.

Vivian tells Wilson he has until 6 p.m. to impress her before she moves on to someone else. The pair walk around downtown L.A. taking in the scenery as they parry and thrust about the eternal issues between men and women, growing more attracted to each other in the meantime. In this lovely interlude, the film becomes a kind of travelogue, the city awash in black and white. It reminded me very fondly of Rod Pitts' Memphis indie What Goes Around from a few years ago.

There's a little bit of a Jon Favreau/Vince Vaughn vibe in the chemistry between Wilson and his crass roommate, Jacob (Brian McGuire), who pushes a handful of condoms on him before his blind date. Midnight Kiss has a filthy mouth and a post-collegiate pragmatism about sex. It's pretty funny stuff.

What Midnight Kiss calls to mind more than anything is Richard Linklater's diptych, Before Sunrise and Before Sunset, and perhaps it's not so surprising that all three films share a producer. Ultimately charming and tender, Midnight Kiss is worth checking out in what in all likelihood is the only time it will play here.

In Search of a Midnight Kiss

Thursday, February 12th, 7:30 p.m.

Brooks Museum of Art


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

    • The Girl On The Train

      The film adaptation of the bestselling thriller is more admirable than lovable.
    • The Birth Of A Nation (2016)

      Actor/director Nate Parker writes history in lightning in this rabble rousing thriller of black liberation
    • Blair Witch

      Director Adam Wingard tries to recapture the found footage magic


Intermission Impossible

Broadway Actor Charles Holt Brings Memphis Upstanders to Life

Music Blog

Rest in Peace Clay Hardee

Politics Beat Blog

Fincher Paid to Defeat Flinn in 8th Race, Publication Says

Intermission Impossible

Looking for a Halloween Costume? Theatre Memphis is Having a Yard Sale.

Politics Beat Blog

C-SPAN's Coming!

Politics Beat Blog

Guns to Blast and the Stars and Bars to Fly Again in Bartlett

Fly On The Wall Blog

Bob Corker Has Tiny Feet And It's Funny When He Stamps Them


More by Greg Akers

Readers also liked…

© 1996-2016

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation