Fools is the story of Sam (Michael Szales) and Susan (Mary Cross). The movie opens when the two meet by chance when their hands brush against each other on a Chicago El Train. Sam and Susan are a pair of loners. Susan currently lives with an aggressive roommate that does not treat her well. Sam moves from job to job unable to find one that he feels qualified to hold.
Dances With Films Film Festival (World Premiere)
Writer: Benjamin Meyer
Director: Benjamin Meyer
Cast: Mary Cross, Michael Szales, Rebecca Spense
Sam soon finds a job delivering groceries to shut-in and neglected seniors. With an open heart, Sam goes above and beyond the call of duty and helps his customers with chores and a little conversation. Susan, on the other hand, is literally on the street after her roommate evicts her. Sam allows Susan to live with him in his apartment. Sam soon discovers that Susan is a handful. She’s apparently a princess and must be treated as such. Clearly afraid of conflict, Sam finds himself making us stories to appease not only Princess Susan but also to connect with some of his elderly clients.
It’s not hard to see that Fools is a love story. But Fools also explores the idea that as people, we often lie about our past to make ourselves look better to others or to avoid conflict. For example, Susan lies to her old roommate about a boyfriend she doesn’t have to avoid the feeling of loneliness being single. Also, is Susan lying about being a princess to cope with her newfound homelessness?
What about Sam? During a conversation with one of his clients, Mr. Hill, Sam poses as his estranged son to bring closure to Hill’s pent up regret.
Ultimately, is there a point in our lying that we start believing our own lies? Filmmaker Benjamin Meyer explores this issue extensively in Fools. We’ve all been there. We’ve padded our resume a little, and then we pad it a lot for that extra pizzazz. Soon we start to believe our own hype.
Fools is an unusual love story. The movie starts uncomfortable because you know that Sam is in trouble the moment he opens his world to Susan. But as the movie progresses, it’s hard not to sympathize with Sam. Although you’ll cringe at the point of crisis in his life, you can’t help but root for him on the back end. If you’re interested in the premise of how we lie to ourselves and others, you’ll enjoy Fools. If you’re willing to witness a movie that’s more insightful than your typical love story, then hang on for the ride and be surprised.