Sunday Matinee: At the End of the Day [Film]

 

“After losing his wife and counseling practice, the only thing 32 year-old Dave Hopper has going for himself is his part-time professorship at his alma mater, a growing Christian college. And the only reason he even got that job was because his previous professor, now ambitious dean, pulled a few strings.

The dean’s plans for growth hit a snag when the property he wants to develop has been promised to a gay support group – which has plans to open an LGBT homeless teen shelter if they can raise the money in time. The dean is forced to take drastic measures, offering Dave his dream job, but he only gets it if he goes undercover in the group and stops them from raising the funds needed to buy the property.

Dave reluctantly agrees, and for the first time, is met face-to-face with the community he has been counseling against his entire career. The awkward and emotional experiences that follow lead Dave on a journey of truth, revealing that life and love are not as black and white as he first thought.” – October Coast PR

Filmmaker’s Statement

I grew up in a conservative, evangelical Christian home. I was taught that we had exclusivity to the truth, and the best way to love the rest of the world was to tell them our “truth.” Specifically, we were taught that “love the sinner, hate the sin” was the loving approach to the LGBTQ community.

It wasn’t until I started experiencing life and people outside of that bubble that I realized how dangerous that worldview is, how much I didn’t know, and that the LGBTQ community is full of the most loving, compassionate, and giving people I’ve ever met.

As my faith and views changed, I was compelled to create my first film about the tensions between the church and the LGBTQ communities. I felt an obligation to call out the misinformation that is taught in many churches at the same time I offer a hug to the LGBTQ community, specifically to those youth who have faced religious rejection.

It is my hope that At the End of the Day can bring healing to many who have been harmed, encouragement to those who have been doing the hard work of equality, and an opportunity for others to question their black-and-white worldview.

– Writer/Director Kevin O’Brien

 

 

 

******

I have to start this thing off by saying a very bold statement that I am more than ready to to defend: This is a perfect film. I seriously mean that. Everything from the execution, the performances, to the character development and surprising revolutions, and right down to an ending that, even if you see it coming, is going to figuratively (and hopefully not literally) just plain rip your fucking heart out. It has those cringe-worthy moments that just make you feel sad and/or angry for the injustice in the world, yet has some very whimsical and hilarious comedic moments. Not the least of which are some very hilarious bits brought on by an elderly gentlemen, which I will never not enjoy.

I do have to say that the main thing that really struck a chord with me personally was just how perfectly blunt this film was from beginning to end in terms of the opinions that filmmaker and writer Kevin O’Brien was trying (and succeed) to make very clear. Many people may not actually realize how strictly the evangelical world will adhere to the very black and white way of thinking when it comes to having an opinion on nearly anything. This applies especially to their dealings with the LGBTQ community. Through there “love the sinner, not the sin” bullshit rhetoric, they have managed to face the idea of people not being exactly like them with what is basically a condescending and self-righteous statement. And O’Brien has absolutely no problem pointing this out very matter of factly in a wonderful cinematic way.

 

 

And as we tend to do, we have to talk about the cast! What a damn group of brilliant human beings. Stephen Shane Martin and Danielle Sagona are absolutely brilliant in running the show. Paul Saulo was charismatic as fuck, and just a delight in every second he was on screen. Tom Nowicki made me want to punch him in the mouth every time he spoke, which was right in line with the character he was portraying, so obviously he did amazing! I really could go on and on about the rest of the supporting cast, but I will keep it short and just talk about one more….Chris Cavalier. This fucking kid really blew my mind. I truly loved his performance as Nate, one of the most conflicted characters in the film, and thanks to his brilliant performance, one of the most interesting characters of the film. Cavalier has the type of acting chops that are so good that the probability that he will one day reach a level of success that he will one day abandon the world of indie cinema to pursue Marvel movies & unintelligible Sci-Fi movies like some have in the past (looking at you ScarJo), because he is so talented that he can do well in just about any medium…is very plausible. Let’s hope he keeps on taking on roles like this one, but I would honestly watch him do anything. He was just that damn good. He was a brilliant addition to the cast, and his interactions withe Stephen Shane Martin are absolutely brilliant. I’d say they paired better together than a grape soda and a box of Fruit Roll Ups right before midnight.

It was a truly gripping and compelling experience to watch this film, and I hope you all check it out, and let the ideas that the film presents to us all go directly into your hearts. This film has a beautiful message that needs to be spread. And that is a message of love, if I were to be presumptuous. I know that amongst the hate-filled speech that is spoken with this film, there was an overwhelming sense of love to be felt throughout it. And, at the end of the day (see what I did there?) this is simply a brilliantly made and touching film that is going to make you laugh and cry and hopefully understand a bit more about yourself and the world around you.

 

At the End of the Day is available on iTunes and VOD. 

 

 

 

 

About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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