Monika Mitchell
2003, USA, 98 minutes

“John Cassini is the last guy Hollywood would ever give a leading role in a high profile picture (so he) had to make Break a Leg happen from scratch, and as a result his performance is imbued with a special resonance and sense of theatrical showmanship.” —Variety

We raise the curtain on the 6th San Francisco Independent Film Festival with an excellent, and very funny, example of DIY independent movie-making: Monika Mitchell’s multiple award-winning debut feature, Break a Leg.

What would you do if one person stood between you and your life-long dream… again and again? Mitchell’s brilliant black comedy is the rags-to-riches tale of a talented actor who can’t get a break—so he makes one. Despite his obvious talent, Max is always the second choice for career-making parts. He continually loses the great roles to a producer’s talentless nephew, or to drug-addled Tinseltown has-beens with more “marketable” names. So he is forced to claw his way to the top with raw talent—and a baseball bat.

Boasting an intelligent and heart-felt script, stylish direction, laugh-out-loud gags and an exceptional acting ensemble, Break a Leg will remind you just how vacant the multiplex talent-pool really is. Indie staples Jennifer Beals, Rene Rivera, Molly Parker, Barry Primus, Kevin Corrigan, Sandra Oh and Eric Roberts (as the “marketable” name) round out the outstanding cast. Don’t miss it.

—Bruce Fletche

In attendance: Director Monika Mitchell, Actor/Writer/Producer John Cassini, Actor/Writer Frank Cassini, Actors Jennifer Beals, Rene Rivera, Molly Parker, Barry Primus, JJ Johnston.