The Zeros | Chicago Reader

The Zeros

When a young man learns he has just weeks to live, he decides to track down the grade-school sweetheart who provided him with a fleeting glimpse of true love. Writer-director-producer John Ryman also served as location manager, and one of the best aspects of this 2001 Beta SP video is his resourceful and at times striking use of various Los Angeles and Bakersfield locales that double for Arizona, Texas, New Orleans, and Florida. While Ryman sometimes defaults to the reflexively ironic humor that afflicts a lot of contemporary comedy, he can also be effectively romantic, and his final scene achieves an emotional purity that comes close to compensating for his miscues. Inspired by Antonioni's Red Desert, this falls short of that apotheosis of raw truth, but it's in the ballpark. With Mackenzie Astin, John Ales, and Rachel Wilson. 91 min.

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