Finally, an intelligent movie this summer to share the spotlight with Hugh Grant’s “About a Boy.”
A young woman, Zoe, is placed under electronic house arrest for a crime she did not commit. The eccentric and energetic “Cherish, ” written and directed by Finn Taylor (“Dream with the Fishes”) has the virtues of romance and thriller with a good dose of odd love. It is by far superior to any other in its multi-genre this year.
Robin Tunney plays Zoe as a cross between Frankie Potente in “Run, Lola, Run” and an updated Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” She indeed runs for her life, in a sequence clearly influenced by “Lola,” and she hangs out on an apartment terrace wistfully looking at life as Audrey did almost a half a century ago.
Tunney is natural and attractive dealing with the loneliness of exile and a possible romance with the rep for the electronic imprisoning device.
Her antagonist is a male version of Clint Eastwood’s nemesis in “Play Misty for Me”—a cunning loner whose affection for music and her is pathological. This insanity allows for an eclectic soundtrack rich with the songs of the ‘50’s and 60’s and an emphasis on the eccentric contemporary Noe Venable, perfectly suited to the situation, much in the way WCBE’s Dan Mushalko fits lyrics to the lessons of “The Amazing Science Emporium.”
And the music is a star—the pop lyrics give meaning and nostalgia in a world where Zoe is confined by four walls but liberated by her imagination to become a passably good roller skater and lovable neighborhood oddity. Association hit "Cherish" is the titular song whose demented lyrics reflect the antagonist’s sick obsession with a girl he can never have.
Confinement has released her imagination. Finally, an intelligent movie this summer to share the spotlight with Hugh Grant’s “About a Boy.”