Newspaper Review of Nudged
With the permission of the newspaper you can download a PDF of the review as it was published in the San Marcos Daily Record. The same review was published in the Wimberley View newspaper on the following day.
Notice in the Llano County Journal
We had a great time with the Llano Film Society in September 2015
Press Release and Photographs
This is a PDF file with a press release to edit as needed, the official poster and a selection of production photographs. All may be used by anyone for publicity.
Eight people, one a ghost, come together at a community television station. There we find, artists, mathematicians, yoga instructors, computer programmers, old hippies, the slightly crazy and the unrequited.
The story is set in a small Texas town and the three main characters illustrate some of the dynamics going on. Paul, the artist, is a middle-aged widower who has gone into his own little world and convinced himself that he is happy right there. Mary, the mathematician, knows her life includes a big lie that has become burdensome as she is called to lay her cards on the table and reveal who she really is. Rusty, a one-time hotshot radio guy comes to town after his “high life” days are over. Determined to reclaim the past, he is slowly consumed by his fantastical desires and obsessions.
These three, their grown children and the other inhabitants of the TV station, find their lives intertwined and nudge each other into confessions, confrontations and new expectations.
Each major character in Nudged follows a personal arc of behavior development throughout the film. Below are the character arcs as seen by the author. When you view the completed film you will be able to see how the actors have interpreted these roles and how their interactions have played out.
These are modern people living lives of quiet desperation. On the outside they are fairly normal and seem moderately happy. Inside they are sad and not even aware of it. Their friends see what they need more than they do and nudge them to reach out and fill those small but essential gaps in their joy.
Paul Bardsey. Main male character, 50s – 60s. Had cancer, effectively treated, in remission, waiting for other shoe to drop. Unmarried. Spouse died in a car accident. Never wanted to marry again. One grown, unmarried daughter. Loves his daughter and has let Rose follow her own way in life. Quiet, introspective man. Retired art teacher. Has made living as a painter – abstract art. Trying to produce a new, great painting somehow… needs to move beyond his past memories… before he runs out of time. Paul feels the nudges of change. He creates/calls to himself his dead wife, Lynette, who voices some of the concerns Paul would like to ignore. Paul cannot release the memory of Lynette and incorrectly assumes that vitalizing his art career is the solution. Lynette and Rose know better and nudge him towards Mary. Paul makes a few ineffectual steps in that direction and finally they step across the barriers.
Mary Morrigan. Main female character, 50s – 60s. – Divorced (never married actually), one grown daughter. Teaches on-line courses in mathematics for private university. Does children’s math and science show for community TV station. A bit cold and distant at times. Confirmed bachelorette. Regardless of many joys in life and in raising her daughter, Mary is sad deep inside and has spent considerable energy over her adult life to maintain this independent persona. In Paul and due to the nudges of her daughter, Mary acknowledges that another person could add to her life.
Both Paul and Mary finally decide to allow another person to get closer and in that dawning love find joy.
Lynette Bardsey. Paul’s dead wife who appears to him in his paintings. She is younger than Paul as she has been dead for a number of years. Lynette prods Paul to grasp what is missing for him now and to release the past. We never quite know if she is a ghost or imaginary.
Rusty Day. Unemployed voice talent, 40s – 50s. Living with his sister and looking for a job at the station. He is outgoing and personable but he has fallen on hard times. His old life is gone and he can’t find another path. Because of depression and lack of motivation, and a fair level of alcohol and drug use, he is using magical thinking to plan his way back to delusions of his former prosperity. Some people see him as an annoying but harmless flirt. Others cannot stand him at first sight. Overall, Rusty is a sad figure looking for a lost past. He takes a downward path where the other characters choose to move upwards. Rusty finally acts out his delusions in kidnapping Rose. This is a calm act of total delusion, not one of anger or violence. It plays out like a dream.
Both Rusty and Paul have moments of epiphany around the kidnapping. Rusty has let himself slip totally into his delusions and he is shaken when Paul’s arrow stabs into his body. Paul who goes from astonished to total fury as Rusty attempts to kidnap Rose, finally pulls himself back and sees Rusty as a person in need of help and caring.
Rose Bardsey. Paul’s daughter, 30s – 40s. Teaches yoga in town. Lives with Dad. Has had a lot of dead end jobs. Moved around a lot after college. Has no real goals, is happy day-to-day… a quiet, shy person. She gets sad at times and wonders where her life is going and concludes, “Nowhere fast.” Likes a few glasses of wine as an alternative to a more involved life.
Nina Morrigan. Mary’s daughter, 30s – 40s. Lives with Mom. Just finished master’s degree in computer science, looking for doctoral program. Currently writing apps for Apple products. Is a loner and has never really left the school/college environment lifestyle/mindset. See’s her future ahead of her and is still just preparing for that unknown eventuality.
Both Rose and Nina come across as sad under a layer of “it’s all normal here.” When they meet, small lights turn on and they soon come to realize that each has found a friend in the other. Kindred spirits that blossom into love.
John Irons. Paul’s friend, 50s – 60s. Another artist. Sort of a wild man. Makes found objects sculptures and installations. Lifelong bachelor.
Joe Arrimann. Mary’s friend, 50s – 60s. Manager of very small-time, low-power, local, community TV station. Founder of the station and dedicated to it. Another lifelong bachelor.
John and Joe also work hard to justify their “single guy” life choices. In one scene we almost think they will become a couple like Paul and Mary and Rose and Nina, but that is not the case. Joe finally realizes that his booth operator, Samantha, is someone he would like to get to know better. John never changes. Some of us are happy single travelers.