×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

I’m Reed Fish

With this charming, rural version of a pre-wedding panic, tyro scripter Reed Fish and neophyte helmer Zachkary Adler have crafted a whimsical coming-of-ager that feels genuinely regional in a laid-back Mark Twain/Prairie Home Companion vein. Lanky, somewhat ungainly Jay Baruchel and his talented young cohorts move flawlessly in tune to small-town rhythms.

With:
With: Jay Baruchel, Alexis Bledel, Schuyler Fisk, DJ Qualls, A.J. Cook, Victor Rasuk, Katey Sagal, Chris Parnell.

With this charming, rural version of a pre-wedding panic, tyro scripter Reed Fish and neophyte helmer Zachkary Adler have crafted a whimsical coming-of-ager in “I’m Reed Fish” that feels genuinely regional in a laid-back Mark Twain/Prairie Home Companion vein. Lanky, somewhat ungainly Jay Baruchel (in the title role) and his talented young cohorts move flawlessly in tune to small-town rhythms. Pitch-perfect dialogue, quietly dynamic helming and small-scale action on a widescreen canvas make for a very appealing film that has real commercial possibilities.

Reed’s local radio program of neighborhood doings and cracker-barrel philosophy, a folksy legacy of his late father, makes him the voice and communications hub of his hometown of Mud Meadows, a fictional small town in the U.S. Aided by station manager/cameraman Frank (Victor Rasuk), he hosts a similar TV show.

Reed is about to marry Kate (Alexis Bledel), the local beauty, whom he has known since childhood. But when old friend Jill (Schuyler Fisk), an aspiring songwriter, returns from college and blows him away with her music, Reed begins to question his choices of career and marriage partner, much to the consternation of the townsfolk.

Midway through the proceedings, the filmmakers reveal the pic so far is actually a film-within-a-film, Reed evidently having decided to leave radio and TV for 16mm autobiography. But the illusion of small-town life is so strong — and virtually everyone appearing in the film is also attendant in the film-within-the-film — that the viewer slips right back into the fiction, accepting the plot twist as a further example of homegrown ingenuity rather than as a breakdown of the film’s fictional premise.

Pic’s power lies not in postmodernism but in its take on how rural youths relate to the contemporary scene. Mud Meadows is presented as being very much part of the 20th century, if not quite up to the 21st; Reed’s pal and also a fellow groom Andrew (a wonderfully goofy DJ Qualls), who is hung up on martial arts and Chuck Norris, triumphantly high-fives his bride at the altar.

Well-known cast of young pros appears downright indigenous.

Pic’s unsentimental immersion in the rural pace, textures and rituals is well served by Doug Chamberlain’s ‘scope lens. Other tech credits are excellent, with Schuyler Fisk’s music effective.

I'm Reed Fish

Production: A Squared Foot production. Produced by Bader Alwazzan. Executive producers, Akiva Goldsman, Kerry Foster, Michael Mihalke. Directed by Zachkary Adler. Screenplay, Reed Fish.

Crew: Camera (color, widescreen), Doug Chamberlain; editor, Yuka Reull; music, Roddy Bottum; music supervisor, Toby Record; production designer, Ariana Nakata; sound, Brendan Beebe, Kasper Hugentobler; casting, Carol Barlow. Reviewed at Tribeca Film Festival (Discovery), May 3, 2006. Running time: 93 MIN.

With: With: Jay Baruchel, Alexis Bledel, Schuyler Fisk, DJ Qualls, A.J. Cook, Victor Rasuk, Katey Sagal, Chris Parnell.

More Film

  • 'Who Will Write Our History' Review:

    Film Review: 'Who Will Write Our History'

    The most famous diarist of the Holocaust, Anne Frank, began to write down the drama of her daily life with no ulterior motive (apart from her teenage ambition to write fiction). But in March 1944, the year before she died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, she heard a radio broadcast by a member of the [...]

  • Spider-Man: Far From Home trailer

    Film News Roundup: 'Spider-Man: Far From Home' Trailer Sets Sony Pictures Record

    In today’s film news roundup, “Spider-Man: Far From Home” sets a studio record, Chris Meledandri and Glenn Close are honored, an art-house streaming service is unveiled, and “Cliffs of Freedom” gets a release. TRAILER STATS The first “Spider-Man: Far From Home” trailer has set a record as the biggest digital launch in Sony Pictures history [...]

  • Frank Grillo Hell on the Border

    Frank Grillo to Star in the Thriller 'Hell on the Border'

    Frank Grillo is set to star in the action-thriller “Hell on the Border” with Wes Miller directing. Miller also penned the script with Curtis Nichouls, Henry Penzi, and Sasha Yelaun producing. Ron Perlman is also on board to co-star. Plot details are unknown at this time. Production is currently underway in Birmingham, Ala. More Reviews [...]

  • Lee Unkrich Variety Oscars Nominees Lunch

    'Toy Story 3,' 'Coco' Director Lee Unkrich to Exit Pixar After 25 Years

    Lee Unkrich, who won Academy Awards for “Toy Story 3” and “Coco,” is departing Pixar Animation Studios after 25 years to spend more time with his family. Unkrich joined Pixar in 1994 after working as an assistant editor in television on “Silk Stalkings” and “Renegade.” He served as editor on Pixar’s first feature, 1995’s “Toy [...]

  • Velvet Buzzsaw trailer

    Netflix Original Movies: What to Look Forward To in 2019

    Following the biggest fourth-quarter worldwide subscriber gain ever and some controversy around increased prices in the U.S., Netflix looks to keep its momentum going into 2019. From Jan. 18 through March, the streaming site will release 10 original films, including action-packed thrillers, a post-apocalyptic sci-fi, quirky comedies, inspirational dramas, an artistic horror movie and a viral [...]

  • Third 'Fantastic Beasts' Production Start Pushed

    Third 'Fantastic Beasts' Production Start Pushed Back Several Months

    Warner Bros. is pushing back the production start date of its third “Fantastic Beasts” movie several months from July to the late fall, a spokesperson said Friday. Actors have been notified about the change in dates. The untitled third “Fantastic Beasts” movie has not yet set a release date. “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find [...]

  • The Beatles Eight Days a Week

    Imagine's Documentary Arm Sets First-Look Pact With Apple (EXCLUSIVE)

    Brian Grazer and Ron Howard’s Imagine Documentaries has set a first-look pact with Apple to develop non-fiction features and series. The deal comes as Imagine is investing heavily in the premium non-fiction arena. The company in June recruited RadicalMedia veteran Justin Wilkes to head Imagine Documentaries as president. The deal suggests that Apple sees docu [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content