[ONE WEEK ONLY] Toward the end of Rebecca Goldberg’s middling Refuge
, protagonist Amy (Krysten Ritter) argues with her boyfriend about their future. “Do you ever think about it?” she screams. “Who I'd be if I didn't have all this shit?” It’s a question Amy can't get out of her mind, and for good reason. Her parents abandoned the family years before—the details are never filled in—forcing her to give up a college scholarship and care for her two younger siblings (Logan Huffman and a spunky Madeleine Martin) in their nowhere town. The dialogue can be clunky: “See, I was reading this book, and there’s this woman, and she gets lost,” Amy says as a way of describing her predicament. But some of the best moments come when Ritter’s face wordlessly shows Amy’s struggle to pick a side: comfortable mediocrity with her boyfriend (Brian Geraghty), or holding out for something better that might never come. But the film itself teeters along the same line, with moments of profundity strung in among the contrived drama. Refuge
is based on Goldberg’s own play, but watching the film you might wonder how, without the lush cinematography and gloomy soundtrack by the Milk Carton Kids, the story ever held up on its own.
Clinton Street Theater