Another 2017 Slamdance entry, this unconventional feature by Toronto-based Joyce Wong charmed the festival programmers for its deft handling of its subject—a painfully awkward encounter between a security guard and the guy who serves the drinks at the bar at a shopping plaza. This is Scarborough, Ontario, where nothing ever happens. But the people who inhabit that world have hopes and dreams, just like the rest of us. Betty and Danny are as ordinary as it gets, but the film fleshes out their emerging characters in steady, revealing ways, exposing a vein of humanity we all recognize in ourselves. This is no small achievement. One can only imagine the pitch session: “it’s a Canadian romcom, doofus boy meets lonely girl at a plaza and nothing goes quite right.” There’s so much more going on here, though. The film folds you into its sense of place, person, and purpose with a calm, confident ease. As Wong well shows us, there’s drama in even the most unlikely places, wherever life is being explored by a talented artist.
Director/Writer: Joyce Wong
Producers: Matt Greyson, Harry Cherniak and Joyce Wong
Runtime: 87 min
Followed by a Q&A with Joyce Wong.