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Please Stand By DVD Review

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While predictable, “Please Stand By” has a lot of heart.

“Please Stand By” revolves around an intelligent and driven high functioning autistic woman named Wendy. She lives at an assisted living center with her dog Pete and is looked after by a caregiver named Scottie. During the day she works at Cinnabon, but when she has time to herself, she works on an epic “Star Trek” screenplay which she is hoping to submit to Paramount for a Trek screenplay contest. When she discovers that time is running out to submit it, Wendy secretly leaves the facility and sets out on her own (from Oakland to Los Angeles) to submit the screenplay in person. Scared for her safety, Scottie (and her son) and Wendy’s sister Audrey both try to find her. Alas, the journey for all of these people is easier said than done.

Written by Michael Golamco (and based on his own play), director Ben Lewin’s “Please Stand By” is a heartfelt story about autism, goals, growing, family, life, art and understanding. The film could have easily devolved into a quirky road trip movie that portrays autism in a cliched and dishonest way, but it thankfully never becomes that. From start to finish, it is a film that is both serious and respectful in its depiction of autism. Of course, the movie is about more than that as I mentioned, but, at the center, it is very much about an autistic woman’s personal and emotional journey.

While the script does have plenty of rewarding emotional moments both with Wendy and her interactions with others, it is not without its flaws. The main issue is that the story feels very telegraphed. It’s all very surface level and astute viewers will always be a couple steps ahead of the film. Simply put, it’s a bit too straight forward. The story could have gone deeper especially when it comes to Wendy and Audrey’s relationship which wasn’t explored nearly enough.

The cast is superb across the board. Dakota Fanning truly carries the film as Wendy and gives one of (if not the best) performance of her career. Toni Collette and Alice Eve also shine as Scottie and Audrey respectively. A special shout-out has to go to Patton Oswalt who has a small but crucial role.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 2.40:1. How does it look? A solid standard definition transfer.

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. How does it sound? It’s not a very audio intensive movie, but this 5.1 track does the job.

Extras: * Magnolia trailers and a trailer for “Please Stand By” * Nearly 4 minutes of deleted scenes * “Making Of Please Stand By” contains film clips, interviews, set footage, story discussions, etc.

 

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May 1, 2018 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , ,

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