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Gifted is like pancake syrup-it looks warm and loving, and tastes sweet while serving as a catalyst for a fine meal, but in the end, it manipulates your taste buds into making a bad choice for your stomach, which then creates an ache. Allow me to explain.
Frank Adler (Chris Evans) just wants to lay low, raise his niece Mary (McKenna Grace), and create a small quaint life in the peaceful suburbs of Florida. There’s only one problem: Mary is a mathematical genius and stands head and shoulders above the rest of her first grade class and isn’t fitting in. When Frank refuses to send Mary to a prestigious school for gifted kids, certain measures are taken to ensue the young girl is given the “proper” education. But what exactly is “proper” for Mary and does it fit with Frank and the grandmother, Evelyn (Lindsay Duncan), who may have ulterior motives. (more…)
“There will always be a struggle. You just have to choose who you are going to struggle with.”
When the summer winds start to deaden and all the superheroes go back to their sheds located galaxies far far away, that means it’s about time for lighter more sophisticated fare.
With no offense to the metal suit bodied big hammer swinging angry poster boy crowd, I like a little wistful light fairy tale romance with a few shades of real life bold mixed in as Labor Day approaches. Captain America himself, Chris Evans. took a holiday with Before We Go. Evans went behind the camera for the first time and directed a sweet little gem about a man and woman who run into each other by accident at Grand Central Station and embark on a one night adventure as past, present and future ties that bind are discussed.
Evans pulls double duty as Nick, a soulful if saddened trumpet player who sees a woman in distress miss a train. Brooke(played by the just right for the part here Alice Eve) gets a little help from Nick and New York City becomes their playground as time is killed, parties are hit, and the dark night seems to evolve into infinite possibilities. The real time aspect of the plot(which was penned by four different writers) helps the quick 88 minute film keep steppin’ and allows the actors to stay on their toes. The dialogue feels like it’s improvised and that’s a good thing.
There’s nothing heavy happening here. Brooke is a married woman dealing with a crisis and Nick has a past that’s set to hit him in the face that very night. It’s an old school romantic walk between two people picking up the shattered pieces of their heart and looking for the puzzle board they belonged to. The whole film has the feel of a play and that’s what Evans had in mind when he made it. For a guy who spends way too much time in a tight suit fighting invisible creatures on green screens, the chance to put on a coat and venture out into the mysterious cold NYC night with a beautiful woman must have seemed like a day at the beach to the actor. It all moves smooth and easy.
Evans shows a simplistic if assured hand with the camera here, allowing the actors and locale to do the most lifting. He isn’t trying to be Spielberg here. I picture this movie as the kind Edward Burns could have made for a nickel and shot in 11 days back in the 1990’s. Like I said, old school.
The leads are easy on the eyes. The story is familiar if wistful and when you choose New York City as your third wheel, little can go wrong. Well done, Mr. Evans. I can only hope the actor takes a similar adventure between Civil War and Infinity Wars. If you don’t know what those titles mean, that’s because you probably favor sweet little tales like Before You Go.
Check it out on Itunes and On Demand this weekend.