With my computer being broken this past month, I ended missing this great review The Hollywood Reporter has published about Anything, that premiered on LA Film Festival. The review was published right after the clip was released, and I can’t wait to see more of it.
A pleasingly quiet, small-scaled drama about love between strangers and siblings, solidarity between lonely Angelenos and the transformative power of kindness, Anything has much to recommend it. Chief among the film’s charms is the pair of beautifully matched performances at its center: John Carroll Lynch as a depressed widower and Bomer as the trans sex worker he meets when he moves from Mississippi to Hollywood. Backed up by a seamless ensemble and sensitive direction by Timothy McNeil (adapting his own 2007 play for his feature directorial debut), the two leads help the film overcome some daunting clichés and contrivances. After preparing you for the worst — another story of a straight white man saved by the grace of an oppressed minority — Anything sneaks up on you with sharp stabs of humor and surprising depth of feeling.
(…)Lynch, a reliably versatile performer, can project either stomach-turning menace (Zodiac) or down-home decency (the Coens’ Fargo) without breaking a sweat. Here, he plays Early as a placid man with a storm of roiling feelings right below the surface; the actor makes his character’s goodness interesting and complex. And Bomer, who was decorative in the Magic Mike movies but dug deep as the closeted New York Times reporter in Ryan Murphy’s The Normal Heart, gives a performance of real warmth and delicacy. Rather than play Freda as a force of nature or a collection of mannerisms — the typical default modes of actors playing trans women — Bomer renders her fully dimensional: an unpredictable tangle of impulses, by turns defensive and tender. (It’s worth noting that associate producer Kylene K. Steele, a transgender woman, was a personal consultant to Bomer throughout the shoot.)
Some of the more literary dialogue betrays the film’s stage origins, but McNeil has done a fine job of opening the play up and airing it out. Those efforts are boosted by original music from all-female band Spectacular Spectacular and evocative work from Moonlight lenser James Laxton, who captures a range of L.A. moods and settings, from the spooky serenity of a late-night ocean dip to the harsh noise and light of an afternoon in Hollywood.
You can read the full review – talking more about the movie – on The Hollywood Reporter website.