Indie Film Review “Will Reading”



First, the Recap:

Isn’t it sad, but true, that the innate appetite in human beings that gravitates to materialism, avarice, and selfish desire seems to arise when the potential for monetary gain arises?  Friendships become strained, motives become questionable, and extremes in action might even take place.  For example, we have Wendy (Katie Weigl), a recent widow having lost her husband, Will (Jamie Insalaco). Still in a grieving state, she suffers the childish, boorish behavior of his twin brother, Wayne (also Insalaco), whom she ultimately loathes but begrudgingly tolerates. One last piece of responsibility also remains for Wendy–the reading of Will’s will.

Inviting Wayne, plus a former flame now lawyer Steve (Greg Vorob), Will’s former college roommate Dave (Dan Conrad), and a psychiatrist friend Tom (Marc Seidenstein), to a dinner gathering at her home, Wendy and the group finally get to the point of reading Will’s will, all of them secretly hoping they get a piece of whatever pie might be offered. Once money comes into the picture, however, any sense of comradery between the participants vanishes, giving way to a myriad of self-indulgent means by which to gain access to the funds. How will they all end up afterwards–and will everyone make it out alive?

Next, my Mind:

In a very serious case of being “a man of many parts”, writer/director/producer/actor/cinematographer/editor etc, etc Jamie Insalaco delivers a sharply witty, albeit sometimes irreverent, but totally madcap, zany twist on the entire concept of will readings in his 82-minute character-driven romp. While elements of the overall production do give away the lower budget nature of the project, there’s no escaping the biting satire here that showcases the uglier side of human nature when it comes to personal gain, much less the mentality that ensues when suddenly everyone thinks they should be the only beneficiaries of it. Well executed in this respect, the finale is a gut punch that very much puts the character’s foolish choices in their place with an exclamation point!

Given the film’s flat out crazy premise and how events unfold, it was going to take an ensemble cast able to pull of “nutty” well, and this certainly is the case. Weigl is perfect as Wendy, a fed-up widow whose loss ultimately fuels an inner rage that comes out with quite a blast of intensity once the will reading reveals what it does. Her outrageous actions that follow are actually quite hysterical, and Weigl obviously had some fun with the character’s attitude fluctuations throughout. Vorob’s creepy lawyer Steve is also a hoot in that despite all the weight of the initial proceedings being presented, he’s still obsessed with thinking he has a chance to renew love with Wendy. His demeanor is quite innocent, yet carries an air of inappropriateness that Vorob exploits in his performance.

Conrad as Dave likewise provides us with plenty of guffaws in that he is the example of someone who never grew up post-college, highly non-PC in almost everything he says until we find he might only be all bark and no bite. Seidenstein’s psychiatrist ends up in need of his own skills on himself by the time his analytical mind has been warped by events transpiring. He’s almost the biggest fish out of water present, but then again, everyone’s off their rocker soon enough! Finally, Insalaco’s Wayne gets one of the biggest, most pivotal moments in it all, and it’s worth the payoff we as viewers get! In total, “Will Reading” is a fun comedic adventure that still may not be for everyone, but carries with it further examples of the talent and creativity found in independent cinema’s far reaching world. Oh, and a most unexpected musical number to boot! Watch and find out!

As always, this is all for your consideration and comment.  Until next time, thank you for reading!

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