Film Review: ‘Be Good’ to Get Fest Premiere at Midwest Independent Film Festival

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CHICAGO – Possibly one of the most perplexing times of life is the aftermath of the couple having their first child. The anticipation and joy quickly morphs into the reality of lifelong responsibility and care. Writer/Director Todd Looby captures that reality succinctly in his latest film, “Be Good.” Oscarman rating: 4.5/5.0
Rating: 4.5/5.0

This independent feature is beautifully composed and more importantly, expansive. Looby uses the neighborhoods, parks and public transportation systems of Chicago to full measure, giving the story of a mother going back to work, and leaving a six month year old child in her husband’s care, a broader scope than imagined from such a description. There is a light touch in the story, as to the normalcy and odd quirks that happen when lives of the parents become irreversibly altered in caring for a baby. It’s a tale as old as humankind itself, but Looby gives it a spin that makes it compelling and empathetic. The film gets its fest premiere at the Midwest Independent Film Festival in Chicago on Tuesday, February 5th.

Paul (Thomas J. Madden) and Mary (Amy Seimetz) have welcomed their first child, a daughter named Pearl (portrayed by Todd Looby’s real-life daughter, Tessa). The six month maternity leave has ended for Mary, and she reluctantly goes back to the office, leaving the baby with Paul, an independent filmmaker working on a screenplay adaptation. Mary experiences the separation acutely, especially when she has to discreetly pump breast milk in the company storage room.

Meanwhile it seems that Paul has nothing but guilt, as his daughter refuses to sleep during either the night or day. Exhausted and under tremendous pressure to finish the screenplay, Paul’s affable personality begins to burn out. It’s not helped by his flighty friend T.J.(Todd Looby), who has the summer off, and tempts Paul to the park on a daily basis. An important film festival is in the offing, and Mary is expressing her desire to stay home as well, so the pressures of the first year of their child’s life is bearing down on them.

“Be Good” has its festival premiere at the Midwest Independent Film Festival on Tuesday, February 5th, 2013, starting at 6:30pm. The festival takes place at Landmark Century Centre Cinema, 2828 N. Clark Street, Chicago. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets. “Be Good” features Amy Seimetz, Thomas J. Madden, Kathryn Henderson, Joe Swanberg, Todd Looby and Tessa Day Looby. Written and directed by Todd Looby. Not Rated.

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Be Good”

Amy Seimetz. Tessa Looby, Thomas Madden
Mary (Amy Seimetz), Pearl (Tessa Looby) and Paul (Thomas Madden) in ‘Be Good’
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StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Be Good”

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