Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars
Sam (Crudup) is a hot shot advertising exec who has just landed a major deal. He excitedly calls his son, Josh (Miles Heizer) and invites him to come celebrate with him. Tragically, Josh never shows up. His son gone, Sam crawls into a bottle. He stumbles across an assortment of original songs that Josh had written and, in an attempt to understand the son he lost, Sam begins to learn each one. After playing one of the songs at an open mic night he attracts the attention of Quentin (Yelchin) a young musician intrigued by the song. They form a band but soon discover that music, like life, is unpredictable.
Skillfully directed by William H. Macy, “Rudderless” is one of those small independent films that it’s a privilege to discover. The cast, led by Crudup, does a fine job of conveying the ups and downs of life and how people deal with them. Yelchin is equally good, giving a layered and nuanced performance that is miles away from the earnest Ensign Chekov he plays in the “Star Trek” films.
Supporting work by Laurence Fishburne, Selena Gomez and director Macy keep the film moving and the original songs are both well written and memorable. The script, which Macy worked on with writers Casey Twenter and Jeff Robison, hits all the right notes and packs an emotional wallop you never see coming. Director Macy keeps the story moving and never allows the emotions to become forced, hitting a home run with his feature film directorial debut.
“Rudderless” is currently available now on Digital HD and VOD.