8 December 2010 | tigerfish50
Bald misfit spins his wheels in downbeat Indie
Jason Prayer lives his sad life as a round peg in the square black hole of college football-obsessed Lincoln, Nebraska. Writer/director Stephen Berra has provided his hero with plenty of bizarre baggage so that an audience can easily tag him as one of Indie Film's stereotypical oddball protagonists. He suffers from alopecia, an auto-immune disorder which has left him completely hairless. His father has committed suicide, and he lives with his mother in a shabby house besieged by the electricity company's debt collectors - and he works the day shift at a gas station where he's terrorized by a muscle car maniac.
Jason's evenings are spent assisting the senile owner of a decaying cinema, where vintage movies are projected over empty auditoriums. His prospects perk up when beautiful, warmhearted Indie-girl Frances shows up at the theater, and recognizes him as a kindred spirit. Later that night she drives him home after he gets beaten up by the psychotic motor-head, but unfortunately the course of true love never runs smoothly for sensitive Indie heroes. By the end of the film it's uncertain whether Frances is escaped-from-an-asylum crazy, or a figment of Jason's imagination created by too many nights at the movies. Either way, she's the catalyst that prompts him to embark on a mythic Indie quest for a Golden Fleecy life beyond freezing wintry Nebraska - and that can't be all bad.