Tribeca Review: Downtown Owl

Tribeca Review: Downtown Owl

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“Downtown Owl” is a quirky dramedy that totally sneaks up on you with its super quick and sharp dialogue between some seriously unique characters. It’s anything but your average film, packing scenes that might remind you of something from Charlie Kaufman or Alexander Payne, complete with a mix of really stark reality, off-the-wall characters, and totally unusual interactions.

Set in the ’80s during the Reagan era, the film doesn’t really feel like it’s stuck in that time. Most characters are pretty out there, larger than life, except for Ed Harris, who nails it as Horace, the wise old man of Owl. He’s a rock for Julia, played by Lily Rabe, a new teacher in town who seems to catch everyone’s eye.

It feels like each character is starring in their own solo performance, being super direct and almost narrating their own quirks and those of others like they’re spilling the latest gossip.

The story really kicks off with Julia’s move to Owl, a tiny place where everyone’s in everyone else’s business and secrets don’t stay secret for long.

It takes a minute to get used to the rapid-fire banter, but once you do, there are plenty of clever lines and witty comebacks that got me laughing more than once. The town of Owl might be chilly and a bit weird at first, but once you settle in, it’s kind of like visiting an odd little tourist spot that’s unexpectedly fun.

“Downtown Owl” definitely isn’t for everyone. It’s full of unconventional humor that really hooks you, but towards the end, it kind of dragged on and started to lose my interest, leaving me more annoyed than entertained. Overall, it’s a film that’s worth the watch if you’re into something a little different and are willing to hang in there through the quirky twists and turns.

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