Metro Weekly

The Reception

Reel Affirmations 2005

Review by Will O’Bryan

Rating: starstarstarstar (4 out of 5)

Monday, 10/17/2005, 9:15 PM
Feature presentation, $6 at Lincoln Theatre

OOH-LA-LA. Hide the liquor. In the snowy hinterlands of… Vermont? Quebec? We’re not quire sure, but alcohol-fueled dysfunction is afoot. French Jeannette (Pamela Stewart), hater of straight men, lives in isolation with her gay pal, Martin (Wayne Lamont Sims). They manage their domesticity like a long-married couple, concerned primarily with cooking dinner or chopping firewood.

An unannounced visit from Jeannette’s daughter and her new husband quickly reveal that this home on a snowy hillside is filled to the brim with baggage. And Jeannette gets very creative in detailing it once she’s gotten a bellyful of red, red wine. She seems to especially enjoy ranting about Martin’s relationship to ”eez precious ass-hoooole.”

In such a pristine setting, the strains and pains of many unraveling and developing relationships are all the more disconcerting. Indeed, it is a bumpy ride. People with a personal relationship with alcoholism — or a bipolar parent — may want to steer clear. The Reception () may be a bit too much to swallow. For those willing to take the plunge, the reward is believable insanity, deep characters and beautiful production values.

Also playing with The Reception is On the Low (), which manages to be remarkably touching in its short 15 minutes. Sexual orientation, adolescence, manhood, integrity and even justice, all pile into Luther Mace’s short. That he got rights to some great music is icing on this cake.

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The Reception
Follow Will O'Bryan on Twitter @wobryan.

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