Actor For Hire – Movie Review – Dances With Films

Actor For Hire is the story of struggling actor, Jesse O’Neill, in hopes of becoming a legitimate Hollywood Actor. After losing yet another role because he is bald, Jesse finds quick success when he dons a cheap wig and becomes a completely different actor. Jesse soon finds that to get a break; he has to create a break.  That break comes as Jesse (with wig) is fired from a TV show and quickly befriends the show’s star, Joel Hogan. The little white lie of Jesse now needs to be protected as he starts to become noticed by everyone in Hollywood. It is amazing how different Jesse looks with and without the wig.

The movie is also an expose of the life of the unknown actor as they bounce from one audition to the next. They embellish their work to pad their resumes and audition for people who don’t know what they want. The problem is we’ve seen this kind of film before.

Dances With Films (2015)
Marcus Mizelle
Writer: Marcus Mizelle
Cast: Jesse O’Neill, Joel Hogan, Hollie Shay, Jandres Burgos, Greg Perrow, Najee De-Tiege, Jesse C. Boyd, Brittany Finamore, JT Alexander, Beth Lepley

Actor for Hire is not an original story. We’ve seen plenty of movies about struggling actors. The appeal of the movie is that it is a stereotypical independent film. You can see that writer/director Marcus Mizelle made Actor for Hire with an extremely low budget, with all of his friends and most likely without a single filming permit. It is as if the movie, Bowfinger, was his manual on making a film.

The best example is the moment that Jesse has a meeting on a studio lot. The camera follows Jesse as he enters the soundstage doors. As the camera pans, you see is the corner a studio security guard walking right to the camera. That’s just one of the Bowfinger.

I was not blown over by Actor for Hire. The story is solid and moves at a good pace. Most laugh-out performances come from the film’s supporting actors, especially from Greg Perrow as Jesse’s body builder actor and Jandres Burgos, who manages to go too deep into character. You get the sense that Actor For Hire is a labor of love for filmmaker Mizelle.

Walking away from Actor for Hire, I felt more admiration for the film, than amazement. I admire the filmmaker, cast, and crew for their hard work to achieve their dream of completing the film. Watch Actor For Hire as a way to support the independent filmmaker. Great filmmakers are creative and resourceful when it comes to making a movie with nothing. Kudos to Mizelle for getting his vision on screen and producing a solid film.

For more information about Actor for Hire and future screenings, go to

American Ultra – Movie Review

American Ultra is the story of former CIA sleeper agent and now stoned convenience store clerk, Mike Howell (Jesse Eisenberg). After wanting to take his girlfriend, Phoebe (Kristen Stewart), on vacation to Hawaii and to propose to her, things go wrong when the CIA Director Adrian Yates (Topher Grace) wants to terminate all sleeper agents. Agent Lasseter (Connie Britton) decides to reactivate the sleeper agent in order to give him a chance to survive.

Release Date: August 21, 2015
Writer: Max Landis
Director: Nima Nourizadeh
Cast: Jessie Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Connie Britton, Topher Grace, Bill Pullman, Tony Hale, John Leguizamo.

American Ultra is a movie you watch because it looks like a cool movie and it stars people you like. As far as the sleeper-cell spy thriller, American Ultra is not a groundbreaking movie at all. But its fun, violent and has a cast you like.

The action is fun and ultra violent. There are copious amounts of blood. No one comes out of the battle clean and the body count is significant. As far as the sleeper agent story line, the Bourne movies tell a better tale, but for American Ultra the story is ultimately about a guy, who is a living weapon, who just want to be with this girl at the end.

As far as acting is concerned, Eisenberg plays the lovable stoner to perfection. You immediately sympathize with the character from the very beginning and root for his survival to the end. Stewart is the always understanding girlfriend and comes across as likable and in love. Fans of Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights) and Tony Hale (Arrested Development) will have another reason to see their favorites actors put on a good performance.

The story is simple. The action is violent and we like the actors. The movie’s only real flaw is that there is nothing new or inspired about the film. Go see John Wick or Mad Max for the best action movie so far.