Three Imaginary Girls

Seattle's Indie-Pop Press – Music Reviews, Film Reviews, and Big Fun

The Off Hours

Pretty waitress Francine (doe-eyed Amy Seimetz) sleepwalks through diner shifts and time spent playing video games with her foster brother/roommate Corey (Scoot McNairy, Monsters), and an unfaithful boyfriend. Enter truck driver Oliver, whose ease, friendliness, and kindness spark an instant connection, and a desire for something that may be beyond her reach.

Two side-plots—one involving alcoholic diner owner Stu and heart-breaking exchanges between him, his ex-wife (played expertly by Lynn Shelton!), and teen daughter, and the other focusing on a second waitress: a widowed Russian mail-order bride—enhance the viewers’ wish for Francine to break free of her static, lonely life.

Seattle-based director and writer Megan Griffiths’ shooting style and script both command strong performances, complemented perfectly by cinematographer Benjamin Kasulke’s Hopper-esque diner shots and dusk-colored landscapes. The Off Hours is a rich, emotionally charged slice of cinematic goodness that shouldn’t be missed.

{The Off Hours screens at SIFF June 6, 7pm and again on June 7, 4:30pm at the Neptune Theatre}