3 September 2011 | artdoesntpay
"The Truth About Angels" is a little film from filmmakers who really understand the power of the medium. Writer-director Lichelli Lazar-Lea really has something to say, and says it with little tools at her disposal but with a skill and intelligence that is sadly missing for most of the studio crap that is put out there these days. Reminiscent of Kubrick's "Eyes Wide Shut," Robert Altman's "A Wedding," and even Larry Clark's "Kids," it is an exciting debut for a young filmmaker who has the potential to be one of the great filmmakers to emerge in recent years.
Set in a private party inhabited by LA's elite kids, the film is a commentary on the cynicism of youth culture that exists all over the world. At times fun and heart felt, dark and horrifying, the film starts as a fish-out-of-water drama and then spirals into a suspenseful and surreal nightmare as the everyman protagonist, Pablo, discovers the dark side of the glittering Hollywood world he once aspired to be a part of.
To help her in her mission, Lichelli has the help of a relatively unknown but talented cast. Italian-born actor, Antonio "Nino" Del Prete, carries the movie as Pablo, an everyman who finds himself on a fast track to hell. Del Prete has a naturalism and intensity that is seldom seen in actors with twice his body of work. Comic actor, Simon Rex, shows just how undervalued he is in his role as Kane Connor, Pablo's movie star friend and "in" to the party. Rex shows that his range is way beyond any of the comic roles he has been allowed to play to date. Model-turned-actress Dree Hemingway is effervescent as Kristi, a naive party girl who soon finds she is disposable in this cruel cynical world. Candice Accola, a sensation on the TV show "The Vampire Diaries," shows why her star is rising, and the always good Monique Gabriela Curnen grounds the film as Pablo's wife Anna.
This is a film that leaves you winded and, if you are a parent, questioning whether you are doing a good enough job raising your own children. And what better motivation could there be than to watch a film that takes you on a ride and makes you strive to be a better member of society.