Molly Dworsky and Dave Newberg
Festival of Cinema NYC 2019
Doc Edge, Chagrin Doc, Jaipur, DOC LA, Twin Cities
A filmmaker gets too involved in trying to find a happy ending for his subject, a small-town cook with a secret onion ring recipe.
Zach, a recovering gambling addict who used filmmaking as a rehab tool, decides to follow his dream and become a filmmaker. With fond memories of the onion rings of his childhood home in Minnesota, he decides to make a pilot for a proposed food TV show on unsung “American food legends,” and plans to profile Larry Lang, the son of the originator of those famed onion rings. Larry is an awkward and unassuming 50 or 60-something who was never able to re-open the family restaurant after a fire, and, unfortunately for Zach, has no interest in being filmed. Undeterred, Zach refuses to end the project until he finds a happy ending, attempting to intervene in Larry’s life – which leads Zach’s increasingly unhappy crew to start filming him as the project goes off the rails. Given both the originally intended television focus and the meta nature of the project, it looks and feels messy, and, at times, the crew comes off as playing to the camera, suggesting this likely isn’t all genuine. While more or less watchable, the film’s lack of both polish and originality ultimately make it forgettable.