starring Alicia Goranson, David Eigenberg, Brendan Sexton III, Andrea Maulella
screenplay by David Paterson
directed by Adrienne J. Weiss
by Walter Chaw Utterly stagebound and seldom anything but a small Sundance indie version of Dominick & Eugene, Adrienne Weiss's Love, Ludlow, against all odds, kicks free of its quirk crutches at around the halfway mark--long enough for it to modestly divert, if not especially edify. "Roseanne"'s Alicia "Lecy" Goranson is a tough-talking Queens girl, Myra, charged with the care of her bi-polar, Shakespeare-quoting brother Ludlow (Brendan Sexton III). That she gives the most self-conscious performance in a film about some sort of animalistic social misfit/typical painter speaks ill--but all is salved by David Eigenberg as mild-mannered suit Reggie, who is, for whatever reason, interested in the crass, brassy Myra and so suffers all manner of abuse from her and Ludlow in order to engage in whimsical date-centric misadventures, the inevitable break-up, and the inevitable reunion. Eigenberg has the quality of "Kids in the Hall" vet Kevin McDonald--a fetching blend of innocence and resourcefulness--and his struggle to reconcile his own feelings of inadequacy with those engendered by Myra (and what must be some kind of metaphor in the impossible Ludlow) is well-wrought. In her feature debut, director Weiss too often mistakes revolving around two characters having a dialogue for expanding the boundaries of a play--she demonstrates by her indecision a more general cluelessness about how, exactly, to free Love, Ludlow from its roots. But the writing, however thickly mannered, is at least dense enough with nice turns of phrase (and gifted with Eigenberg's excellent turn) to make the exercise an earnest try rather than a misguided disaster. Originally published: November 24, 2005.