Sex. Intrigue. Laurence Fuller. All three define Jon Cvack’s indie hit ROAD TO THE WELL.
Laurence Fuller’s performance, for one aspect of the film weighed, is brilliant. Cinematic elements and storytelling are also stunning.
ROAD TO THE WELL masters intense mystery storytelling that pulls some excellent punches. It rests on excellent cinematography, dynamic interplay between characters and surprise turns that require some interpretation, but none so intense the film fails to please.
No one is safe in ROAD TO THE WELL. Relationships fray. Choices are made in the worst of circumstances. The guilty are only sometimes held responsible. Secrets are kept, but few can be trusted with them. ROAD TO THE WELL depicts the choices that bring us the worst of humanity, the events that transpire when people do not intervene to prevent another person’s bad decisions, and explains how a chain of those decisions can result in more carnage. It’s a fresh take on the classic fables in which we consider infidelity, murder, friendship, and complicity.
Laurence Fuller’s theater background is evident in this gritty thriller with a uniquely built narrative that prioritizes characterization and the range of emotion found within its portrayal over break-neck pacing. His portrayal of Frank, a man whose life becomes upended as a series of unfortunate events transpires, is a standout among a cast of characters that are well-written in terms of script development and well-performed in all terms of delivery.
It’s evident that every emotion, every facial expression — even down to the surprise shock of being splattered with blood has been considered in his performance. The way Fuller plays off of an ensemble of explosive characters to include Micah Parker and Marshall R. Teague is extraordinary in its intense sense of stoicism that is not without emotionality.
A scene where Fuller exchanges witty barbs of dialogue with a forceful woman billed as a “grungy hippie call girl” portrayed by Roxanne G.C. Brooks is exquisitely crafted.
Scenes that assert that parents who would justify their bullying son are “bigoted trash,” even when a favor is needed, are also refreshing.
If only they were present in more films, whatever their other aspirations.
This Jon Cvack thriller is less action and more intensity as a compelling story unfolds. It’s honestly a great film.