SPANKING THE MONKEY: A black comedy in the truest sense of the term, SPANKING THE MONKEY tells the tale of Ray (Jeremy Davies), a pre-med freshman who must forfeit a summer internship in order to care for his ailing mother (Alberta Watson). The pressure of being stuck at home threatens to overwhelm Ray, and when a night of drinking leads to a physical encounter with his mother, the only escape he can think of is to commit suicide. David O. Russell's film successfully balances comedy with drama, making for an unsettling, yet highly gratifying, viewing experience.
SIMPLE MEN: Director Hal Hartley's third feature film follows two brothers on as they travel across Long Island, New York. Bill McCabe (Robert Burke), a tough-talking ladies' man, has just pulled a robbery and has been double-crossed by his lover. Shortly thereafter, his younger brother, Dennis (Bill Sage), a bookish scholar, convinces him to help search for their father, a radical (and former baseball hero) who's escaped government custody. Along the way, the two encounter both "trouble and desire," when they meet numerous eccentric characters including Elina, an epileptic Romanian girl, and Kate, a woman with a psychotic ex-husband.
LUCKY STIFF: In this comic fable about dating, mating, and meatloaf, Cynthia is looking for one thing in a man...good taste. And when she brings the overweight Ron home, all he has to do is make it through dinner--without becoming the main course.