SXSW Review: ‘Sorry, Thanks’ – We Are Movie Geeks


SXSW Review: ‘Sorry, Thanks’

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Max Callahan is an asshole, or so his friends tell him.   He’s the kind of guy who doesn’t really have a plan.   He just sits by and watches hoping everything will work itself out in the end.   Imagine his dilemma when he has a one-night stand with Kira, an upbeat copy editor who also doesn’t really know what she wants out of life.   And, so begins the catalyst for events in the mumblecore dramedy, ‘Sorry, Thanks’.

Directed by Dia Sokol, who, along with Lauren Veloski, wrote the screenplay, ‘Sorry, Thanks’, is a naturalistic approach to modern love and lust.   It’s story is top-notch, its actors are exceptionally first-rate.   Some of you may recognize Wiley Wiggins from ‘Dazed and Confused’ or ‘Waking Life’.   He brings a realism to Max that can only be found in this type of independent film.   Kenya Miles is decent as Kira, but Wiggins is the star here, injecting his own sense of apathy to the role.   The later scenes involving Kira and a new “boyfriend” are somewhat tedious, and you cannot wait for the film to get back to Max’s story.   However, the story quickly switches gears, and Max and his relationship become a welcomed focal point for the story.

All of the secondary characters and actors are exceptional, as well, including one of the pioneers of the mumblecore film movement, Andrew Bujalski as Mason, the main friend in Max’s life who wants Max to succeed.   Mason is willing to show Max the path to a happier and less asshole-ish existence, but he’s not about to force Max down it.   Ia Hernandez is also subtly scene-stealing as Sarah, Max’s wholesome, half-glass-full girlfriend.   She is able to turn her emotions on a dime, almost unnoticeably natural.   The scenes where she and Max are being playful with one another brings a smile to your face.   You’d be a walking zombie if they didn’t.   I have to spoil one detail, predictable as it is, but, when Sara realizes Max has been cheating on her, Hernandez’s reaction is so crushing and real, you would almost swear Hernandez was having those feelings about Wiggins.

Funny and emotional in all the right places, ‘Sorry, Thanks’ is a superior, story-driven film about what it takes to make relationships survive and the speed bumps in life that we create for ourselves whether we realize it or not.   I, personally, had never seen a film that falls within the mumblecore movement.   I’m ashamed to admit I’ve never seen a Duplass Brothers film or any films by Lynn Shelton or Bujalski.   However, if ‘Sorry, Thanks’ is any indication as to where this movement of film will take me, I am highly anticipating my next.

Overall: 4 stars out of 5