Earlier this year, filmmaker Janicza Bravo and comic Brett Gelman — two artists who just happen to be married — premiered their new film, Lemon, to great critical acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival.
The dark comedy stars Gelman as Isaac Lachmann, the human personification of a “lemon…”:
“[…] a person or thing that proves to be defective, imperfect, or unsatisfactory. Isaac Lachmann is a dud. Isaac Lachmann is 40. Isaac Lachmann is a man in free fall immobilized by mediocrity. His career is going nowhere. His girlfriend of ten years is leaving him. And his overbearing family doesn’t help matters. What did he do to deserve this? Things were supposed to work out differently for him. Isaac Lachmann had big dreams. Now he just watches as his life unravels.”
This is Bravo’s first feature, though she’s directed dozens of shorts with similarly striking visuals and twisted topics, making her and offbeat actor Gelman a natural creative team. “Bravo’s peculiar style maintains an unnerving quality that feels like cringe-comedy but often takes a sharp turn into odd and alarming glimpses of angry, pathetic characters,” notes Indiewire in a glowing review of the film. “The filmmaker excels at presenting uncompromising characters and magnifying their worst traits, and Gelman’s an ideal vessel for her peculiar approach. He’s never pleasant to watch, but remains a constant object of morbid fascination.”
The film also features Michael Cera (who appeared in Bravo’s 2013 short, “Gregory Go Boom“), Judy Greer, Gillian Jacobs, Jeff Garlin, Shiri Appleby, Megan Mullally, Jon Daly, Rhea Perlman, Frank Melamud, Martin Starr, and more familiar faces.
Lemon hits select theaters, plus streaming services including iTunes and Amazon Video, on August 18th.