28 February 2002 | emboff
A quiet, pleasant surprising little film.
When I come across a movie that is directed by and stars a former TV actor who has only done sporadic film work, I worry that it is a vanity piece and not worth the price of the popcorn accompaniment.
I am always happy when I turn out to be wrong.
Maze is a very nice little film. Not great. Not staggering. It is just quite good. It concerns the flowering relationship between an afflicted artist and the girlfriend of one of his buddies: how and why it happens, the inner turmoil that results and the logical conclusion to the relationship of the three main characters. It doesn't stray from the focus on the main characters and in the course of the film we see and understand how they came to be where they are. To be honest, I have always considered Laura Linney and Rob Morrow to be only adequate actors. They are pleasant enough to watch, but I have never expected much from either. Even with Linney's recent critical acclaim, I didn't expect much from her in this film. Again I was wrong about both actors. Morrow does quite a good job giving us a character afflicted with Tourette's without it either being soooo distracting as to be annoying or looking like a histrionic excorcism. I felt that he was able to show a character that was crippled by his place in society but still letting us see that underneath was a basically good person. And letting us see that good person makes it believable that Laura Linney's character would love him, despite his disease's symptoms. Linney as well gave a performance of growing depth and understanding. We see her character move from genuinely liking Morrow as a comfortable friend to loving him as the true partner she wanted all along. We see it in her eyes when she looks at him, when they work and read together and in the very simple act of taking his hand and quietly calming him while sitting in an audience at a recital.
If you enjoy simple, focused, character movies, I would suggest checking Maze out at your local video store.