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Best Wishes Mason Chadwick

Reviewed By Chris Parry
Posted 12/12/02 15:09:24

"Must... sleep with... Laura Harris..."
3 stars (Average)

Mason Chadwick (Taylor Nichols) is on the crest of a wave. His first novel has been critically acclaimed and purchased in huge numbers, he’s got women hitting on him and people treating him like a celebrity, but now he’s got a problem – what to do with book two. For an answer to that question, his agent (Laurie Murdoch) sends him out into the British Columbia wilderness, to a log cabin by a lake. Aw, pretty.

Even prettier when a nubile young blonde appears at his beach, strips to her nothings and takes a daytime, full-view skinny-dip. Who is this weird little minx? What’s she doing here? And why does she act like she wants to screw but pull away at the final moment like a total prick-teaser?

These questions are soon answered when Weirdo girl returns a few days later, having inspired a sentence or two out of our writer friend, only to turn all Kathy Bates on his ass. While she’s a damn sight more attractive than Bates (please don’t hurt me, Kathy), there’s a certain sinister way about her that makes you wonder what’s going through her mind.

One of those funky little quirky comedies from Canada that are essentially short films drawn out over feature length, Best Wishes Mason Chadwick is a very watchable affair. Lead actor Taylor Nichols is a face that you’ll know from somewhere, even if you don’t know his name, and the adorably mental nymphet Laura Harris does ‘screwed up psycho girl’ far better than Jennifer Jason Leigh did in Single White Female.

The pacing and mood are all spot on and, the longer it goes on, the more you realize that this is a very competent, well performed, well made low budget feature let down only by a lack of sub-plot.

Ultimately Mason Chadwick is a ten-minute short allowed to run about an hour beyond its welcome. It’s not that the viewer will be bored or nauseated or disappointed, it’s that from start to finish it’s obvious – there’s maybe two ‘trailer’ scenes in this whole flick and a whole lot of gearing up to, and down from, both of them.

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