Sunday Matinee: Barbie’s Kenny [Film]

 

Hello Folks! It’s Father’s Day all around the world, so we here at Trainwreck’d Society felt it was only appropriate to have our Sunday Matinee be based around a film that revolves around…a Mother! Aren’t we just so clever? You pay for the whole seat around here, but you’re only going to need the edge, as our old friend & comedian Sean Jordan used to say. In all honesty, the timing has nothing to do with why we are covering Barbie’s Kenny here on Father’s Day. I honestly forgot that that this Sunday would be any sort of mild landmark, it was honestly just my genuine excitement and time availability that made me decide today would be the day to showcase this absolutely incredible film. And when I say incredible, I feel as though that is lacking justice. Let me be absolutely clear here, Folks: Barbie’s Kenny is the best film of 2019. I know we have a lot of proverbial road to cover this year (literally half of it), and we haven’t even hit the awards season, but I seriously can not see any project topping this absolute gem of a film.

Last February, you should definitely remember an interview we did with the brilliant Everything Sucks! actor Zachary Ray Sherman. In that interview, we talked about a little film that he had worked on as his directorial debut, in which we were completely uninformed about, and relied heavily on the internet for research. Obviously always a good call, right? Either way, I was very intrigued by the film, and was hoping to check it out some day. And lo and behold, just in the last week, Zachary himself thus provides! I was expecting to throw this film in the queue and get to it eventually. But then I found myself with 20 free minutes, and I was absolutely hooked. The level of intrigue I had right from the beginning of this film  surprised even myself. But before I get to heavy into my own thoughts on this brilliant film, let’s go back to what Zachary had to say about the film last February:

This project came out of me wanting to quit thinking about directing and making a movie and actually do it. So I self financed it (savings, loans and credit) and shot it very quickly as people were working for free or next to nothing. I was elevated by my talented peers who came on and donated their time, skill and energy to the project. My director of photography (Martim Vian) is brilliant and he was an amazing catch. I didn’t think he’d be available to do it, but he read the script and he liked it and generously came on board. It was a lot of work, but I thrive on the prep, the planning, deciding what’s going to be the best for the making of the movie. I wrote, produced and directed and we shot it in ten days. The story is loosely based off of my girlfriend and her dad. A couple years ago he came to live with us and I got to know him. I dramatized the seed of the inspiration (you can equate it to Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet in that he took this story that took place over months, in some times years in previous versions and he ratcheted up the tension by placing the drama within days) and came up with the script by taking a microbudget online film course led by a great guy Shawn Whitney. The script came together really quickly and after shooting Everything Sucks! I began planning how to go and make my first feature and was shooting a few months later.

– Zachary Ray Sherman, February 2019

 

 

So Folks, as I stated earlier, I absolutely loved Barbie’s Kenny. Not only is it the best film of 2019, it is one of the best indie releases I have seen in quite a great while. It is films like that this that truly got me into loving cinema. And it is so inspiring to know that there are still films like this out there getting made, as well as knowing that folks like Zachary Ray Sherman are still out there to give a damn about making a classic heartfelt and inspiring film.

And what a cast! Seriously, the relationship between the two titular characters, portrayed brilliantly by Tara Bast and Shawn Hawkins, builds so brilliantly. This is of course thanks in part to a beautifully written story, but is definitely guided to perfection by these two incredible performers. And the compassion in the eyes of Bianca Lemeire, who portrays Emily, the woman who may just change Kenny’s life and help him through his turmoil, was absolutely mesmerizing.

 

 

While I can not say that I appreciated this film for any direct relation to my own life, I will say that I completely understand this film. I, and alot of other, know the character of Barb. Some people seem as though they were sent to this earth only to wonder aimlessly, maybe bringing another, better, life into the world, and leaving far earlier than most. It is a familiar concept, yet I can not say that I have ever seen a story like this displayed with so much accuracy and brilliance in the last couple of decades. The guerrilla style filmmaking, and obvious gift in storytelling, Sherman has created absolute magic with Barbie’s Kenny, and if you find yourself in the festival circuit throughout the rest of 2019, I implore you all to check it out ASAP.

 

Check out this trailer below courtesy of Zachary Ray Sherman used for the 2019 Newport Beach Film Festival:

 

About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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