Vancouverites will recognize the title of this locally shot film that's being released in Canada for home-viewing today.
Directed by Vancouver-based filmmaker Bruce Sweeney (Last Wedding), Kingsway is dark comedy about a marriage on the rocks that tips the hat to the fun in dysfunction.
Jeff Gladstone stars as the anxiety-prone Matt, who spots his wife’s motorcycle outside a motel.
His wife Lori (singer-songwriter Colleen Rennison) later explains at a birthday dinner for his mother, Marion (Gabrielle Rose), that she was with a friend who is in town to visit her dying mother.
While Matt accepts her story, Marion and her mechanic daughter Jess (Camille Sullivan) don’t and decide to do something about it—prompting a flurry of busybodies to become overly involved in Matt and Lori’s marriage that entails a pregnancy of uncertain paternity, sexual awakenings, a suicide attempt, and blues rock tunes.
It’s up to a mental-health professional (Jennifer McLean) to help iron things out.
In an interview with the Georgia Straight in 2018, Sweeney explained that the title came from one of the actors remarking that the thoroughfare that cuts through Vancouver is confusing because it makes you think you’re heading in one direction when you’re actually heading in the other—something Sweeney thought captured the central concept of the love lives of the film’s characters.
“I wanted to make a film about love and suicide. Yet make it accessible, not some heavy thing,” Sweeney stated in a news release. “I chose the romantic comedy/romantic drama genre for this reason. For me, theme’s a big deal, and the theme of Kingsway is about the nature and fragility of familial and intimate relationships. I wanted every scene to refer to this in some way.”
The cast also includes Agam Darshi, Paul Skrudland, and Kevin McNulty.
Kingsway is being released nationally on iTunes and VOD today (December 17).