Arts Desk

D.C. Independent Film Festival: A Swingin’ Trio, Reviewed

The D.C. Independent Film Festival opens today and runs through Sunday. Over the next few days, Arts Desk will review a number of the films on the slate.

Highly unlikeable characters tend to result in highly unlikeable films—at least when that character is in almost every scene, as is Homer (Johnny Walter), an unsuccessful novelist, in writer-director Kelvin Z. Phillips’ torturous drama A Swingin’ Trio. When we meet Homer, he’s preparing a Valentine’s Day dinner for his workaholic producer wife, Trude (Timeca M. Seretti). But Homer has plans beyond igniting a typical evening of romance: The table is set for three, with a former stripper named Bryce (LeMarc Johnson) invited to join them. When Bryce arrives, Trude recognizes him from the club and Homer immediately turns into an asshole, insisting—all. night. long.—that the two have already slept together. A Swingin’ Trio plods on like a bad Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, with the characters getting drunker and more hostile—particularly Homer, who on top of his dickery has an inconsistent accent that’s Cajun by the way Foghorn Leghorn. That Bryce stays through the absurdity is rather unbelievable. Spare yourself the same pain.

A Swingin' Trio shows Thursday at 9:30 p.m. at the U.S. Navy Heritage Center. $10.

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  • Curtiss

    Seriously, it is okay not to like a film. But I've seen the film, and obviously you just didn't get it. No mention of the actress' pretty important role, how well the jazz moves the story, nothing. It felt like you decided that you didn't like Homer and that was it. The review seems slight and not very introspective, which it what readers are looking for. You don't have to like a character to experience a film. There are a lot of jerks that make it interesting to watch their lives blow up in their faces (and man, do you want that to happen here). A good film has to make you want to know what is going to happen by the end. And this film does that.

  • E.R.

    Terrible movie. Totally amateur writing/directing.