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The Independent Critic

STARRING
Linds Edwards, Cylk Cozart, Jessica Shipp, Brandon Cobb, Amanda Mink
DIRECTED BY
Steven Wesley Miller
SCREENPLAY
Steven Wesley Miller, Linds Edwards, David Gary and Jessica Shipp
RUNNING TIME
25 Mins.
 "Inch of Grace" Review 
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Taking place over the course of three days, Steven Wesley Miller's Inch of Grace centers around a literary one-hit wonder, Alex (Linds Edwards, Get Low and The Walking Dead), whose career has hit a downward spiral thanks to his own drug and alcohol abuse. When he gets an unexpected rude awakening from his agent, Donnie (Cylk Cozart, Conspiracy Theory and 16 Blocks) and runs into Sara (Jessica Shipp), his stalled career begins to reverse itself as perspiration turns into inspiration.

This 25-minute short film played recently as an Official Selection at the Secret City Film Festival and is the second short film from Miller, the first being a product of the Knoxville 24-hour Film Festival called Sorry Business. Miller also co-wrote the script along with cast members Linds Edwards and Jessica Shipp along with David Gary.

The greatest strength of Inch of Grace lies in its casting, with Linds Edwards nicely cast as the downwardly spiraling writer with tremendous potential. Edwards, who has shown up in indie flicks Boys of Summerville and Point of Fear also reviewed on this site, is especially effective once Jessica Shipp, as Sara, arrives on the scene and their chemistry lights up the screen. Edwards wisely avoids stereotypes in living out Alex's substance abuse. Similarly, rather than reaching for dramatic heights, the unfolding inspiration caused by meeting Sara is refreshingly gentle and easygoing. Shipp is well cast as Sara, embodying her as an earthy and authentic presence and her ability to inspire Alex is quickly believable.

Miller also lenses the film quite nicely, though the use of split-screen imagery begins to feel more gimmicky than story enhancing as the film moves forward. The film works much better when it's simply Alex and Sara and when Miller trusts his characters to tell their stories.

Inch of Grace, filmed in Tennessee, is just getting its start on the indie film fest circuit and should prove to be quite popular among indie and microcinema fests.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic
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