These types of films have been created enough to earn their own brand: The Room Movies. The name of these films is clearly taken from the theater’s “room play” format, and they share a few basic elements. occur in one group. Occur over a limited period of time. They have relatively few cast members. This may all sound like music to the ears of a budget-conscious director, but these limitations focus more on storytelling, performance, and editing than one might expect. It’s easy to see the flaws in this simplified format, as well as the successes. for each original example (12 angry men), there is disappointment (2012 elevator). It’s hard to break.
Room movies are not only budget friendly but also more COVID friendly than other products, which brings us to that Glorious. Director Rebekah McKendry took this story – about the dark things that can happen in a men’s bathroom – during one of the darkest times in our modern history.
Wes (Ryan Kwanten) is clearly going through something major when he rolls into an indefinite break. He screams, cries, has flashbacks and generally has a bad time when he comes across that nugget of relief on the highway. Unlike most travelers, he began squeaking whiskey and burning things in his conveniently located fire pit. After his death, he wakes up in the morning without pants with a noticeable hangover. Naturally, he heads to the men’s room at the rest station to see what he can do to get back on his feet and get moving.
The bathroom looks fairly ordinary, neither filthy nor disgusting. It has two booths, a few sinks and healthy graffiti. The most remarkable feature of this bathroom is the glory hatch that goes from one booth to the next, and the friendly and clear sound coming from the second, closed booth.
JK Simmons’ voice is recognizable as Kermit the Frog, and portraying him as an announcer separated from the other side of the bathroom is a great play. It’s hard not to get caught up in his attractive tone, and Wes hardly tries to resist that attraction. They pass the compliments and some cute laughs before that voice tells Wes that he can’t leave the bathroom. He is dead serious.
This is the whole Glorious: We’re talking to a voice coming from the other side of the pitcher, staying in that comfort, the bathroom stopped, without pants. But even with these very strict restrictions, Glorious Make up much more. Wes is taken by his personal history, which is what got him to be in that particular place at that particular time. The sound also shows that it can do more than just echo and reverberate against tiles, and Wes soon learns not to take this experience too seriously.
Glorious He would totally fall apart if it was left to an actor who wasn’t up to the challenge, but Kwanten proves it. Since he only acts against a bathroom stall or his own reflection, it is impressive that he is able to transport the audience through the many emotional axes that Wes goes through in 79 minutes. We don’t have much time to get to know him before the tension escalates, and Kwanten’s performance ensures we never miss a moment of his suffering or frustration.
where Glorious You get a little stuck in the myths you hope to create. Right from the start, it’s clear that there are greater forces at play, and everything Wes talks to is just making him walk into the massive world he’s made. There are obvious nods to Greek mythology and Lovecraft’s visions of greater deities, but it feels more like a collection of random elements than the creation of coherent myths reimagined. Much like bathroom graffiti, it’s a bunch of Easter eggs, not a single sweeping legend. It’s fun to spot hints, but it feels like a missed opportunity to create a truly specific experience for Wes and that voice.
Due to its limited crew, location and budget, Glorious It is a wonderful achievement. He’s never late or claustrophobic more than intended. With strong performance and mostly tight writing, it’s a tense little movie, with great gods and ideas, but without the pants.
Director: Rebecca McKendry
clerk: Todd Rigney, Joshua Hall, and David Ian McKendry
stars: Ryan Kwanten, JK Simmons
Release date: August 18, 2022 (goose bumps)
Deirdre Crimmins is a Chicago-based film critic who lives with two black cats, and her eternal optimism is that the next movie she’s watching might be her new favorite. She wrote her master’s thesis on George Romero and still loves a good musical work.