Films: Lord Byron

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Lord Byron

Lord Byron

USA, 2011, 90 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: American Indie, Comedy, Drama, Psychological, Religious, Romance
Programs: Contemporary World Cinema, New Directors Showcase
Language: English

DIRECTOR: Zack Godshall
Producer: Ross Brupbacher, Zack Godshall
Editor: Zack Godshall
Screenwriter: Ross Brupbacher, Zack Godshall
Cinematographer: Zack Godshall
Principal Cast: Paul Batiste, Justin Bickman, Joseph Diaz, Rosco Hall, Bria Hobgood

Byron (Paul Batiste) is a modern day Don Juan—of sorts. The overweight, out-of-work, middle-aged man lives with his ex-wife, plus her two daughters and new boyfriend, and spends much of his time lying around the house smoking dope. But romantic he is; when he does leave the couch, it’s to visit with one of his many paramours, each of whom he loves, in his own words, “totally and completely.”

Yet despite—or maybe because of—his numerous affairs, Byron realizes an inner void as he begins to identify closely with a television preacher who rants on and on about a chaotic world from which the only escape is physical separation. It’s undeniable that Byron is indeed surrounded by maniacs in his small southern Louisiana town, all featured in parallel plots that showcase their outrageous ways. Byron eventually decides he needs to retreat from his world and become a monk—but, in his characteristic ambivalence, he feels an equally strong impulse to visit a nightclub in Panama City Beach, Florida, that he saw online.

Lord Byron was cowritten, directed, produced, filmed, and edited on a budget of less than $1000 by Zack Godshall, who masterfully turns the pitfalls of low-budget filmmaking into assets. The result is a beautiful dark comedy about a warm, simple, and tragic man negotiating a mad world.
—MARK MAÑAGO

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