When Brian Cherry, a sweet, sensitive young Los Angelino, falls for the beautiful, electric, and damaged Jules, she turns his ideas about women and sex upside-down. Slowly, he is drawn into a twisted love-triangle that includes Jules and his best friend, Sam. When Jules eventually leaves him for Sam, Cherry decides on a shocking course of action that will destroy the lives of all three.
I’m not much of a drama guy. Very few of them grab my attention. I most often blow them off as being chick flicks (which is actually kind of funny since one of my favorite drama films’ is most definitely a chick flick called “Grace of My Heart”). Anyways, it’s with much surprise that a film like “Cherry.” caught me off guard. With three outstanding lead performances and a third act that is unconventional and devastating, “Cherry.” isn’t exactly a drama like I had originally thought. Director Quinn Saunders and his co-writer David Crane (as well as star) have crafted a really unique and dark tale that shows you how bad and damaged people can be.
Bryan Cherry (David Crane) is one of those sweet and nice guys that every girl says she wants but never seems to go for. His best friend Sam (Rey Valentin) is the exact opposite. He is just in to seal the deal and get out. When out at the bar one night, they both set their eyes upon Jules (Lili Bordan). She is a stunning beauty and Bryan can’t take his eyes off her but is too afraid to speak to her. Without Bryan’s knowledge, Sam pays her to talk to him, wanting to help his friend out. Bryan and Jules hit things off and he is falling head over heels for her. Sam doesn’t quite trust her but at the same time is drawn to her as well. What happens between the three of them isn’t what any of them wanted, scarring and changing their lives forever.
“Cherry.”, from beginning to end is a very tight film. It never felt like there was any filler and that every moment of screen time is used to move the story along at just the right pace. The film opens like any other romantic drama/comedy, but the filmmakers were smart enough to take it into unexplored territory. It’s a bold move but it may alienate some viewers. I felt like it sets itself apart from the pack and leaves you with a dark empty feeling. That is a compliment by the way. It keeps you thinking long after the credits roll and that’s an accomplishment in itself.
Each actor brings their own unique qualities to their roles that help sell you on them. Cherry is such a nice a loveable dude that you almost hate Jules for breaking his heart. Even though Sam is basically the bad guy, you understand why he does what he does and part of you forgives him because we know he cares about his friend. Jules is the most complicated, she is a bit needy and selfish but she means well. Each actor gives stellar performances that has me a bit puzzled that they aren’t getting more visible roles. And I tried to avoid mentioning it but I have to. “Cherry.” contains one of the most incredible butt shots in cinematic history. An absolute bum of beauty on display that had me cursing out loud.
“Cherry.” is a drama that isn’t afraid to stray from being too formulaic. It may start out that way but it aims for the gut when things take a turn. Saunders expertly paces the film in a manner that can capture even the most jaded of filmgoers and grab those who don’t usually take a fancy to more dramatic fare. Even though the film does leave an impact, considering the sexual nature of the story, I can’t help but feel that if things had been a bit more explicit, that maybe it would have landed a harder punch. As it stands, “Cherry.” is still very much a film with an impact. If Saunders and Crane should choose to explore similar themes in future films together, I would really like to see them push the envelope and hit us with something that we could never forget.