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IFFBoston ’14 Review: A is for Alex

IFFBoston alumn Alex Orr returns to the festival with his latest film, “A is for Alex.” The film, also starring Orr’s wife Katie, tells the story of a couple with a baby on the way. With an intro line like that, you’d think this is a more conventional movie, but coming from the filmmaker that brought us the film “Blood Car,” you know there’s more to this story.

AIsForAlex_03The film starts with intro credits with names like George Clooney, Jennifer Lawrence, and Meryl Streep Jr. Immediately breaking the fourth wall at the editing station, Alex’s friend asks “Why would you put their names in there, they aren’t in the movie?” “It’s a bait-n-switch – why else would they see the movie?” replies Alex, it’s this type of self-referential humor that makes the film.

Alex is an inventor, looking to solve the world’s bee crisis. Early in the film, Alex’s robot bee’s are revealed, and throughout the rest of the film, they hilariously zip around in the background. The rest of the film finds Alex and Katie in various situations. Things like dealing with fear of not being a good father, and Alex’s mother’s insistence on uploading videos of him as a child, which [hilariously] leads to her arrest for the AIsForAlex_02trafficking of child pornography.

“A is for Alex” is at times is a raunchy comedy, but at its core, there’s a genuine sweet struggle for Alex and his wife, and I think the filmmakers did a great job of balancing that. Shot over the course of the pregnancy, I can appreciate the filmmakers style of shooting. In the end, “A is for Alex” comes together as an entertaining, funny film.

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