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The Independent Critic

STARRING
Cyrina Fiallo, Tara Samuel, Chris Mollica, Chad Jamian, Camelia Dee, Brian Silliman
DIRECTED BY
Chris Mollica, Greg Townsend
SCREENPLAY
Kenneth R. Frank, Chris Mollica
MPAA RATING
NR
RUNNING TIME
81 Mins.
DISTRIBUTED BY
Comedy Dynamics
OFFICIAL WEBSITE

 "The Mix" Released by Comedy Dynamics 
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Sal (Chris Mollica) should have left everything alone. 

That's hard to do when your promising cookie business is stuck in a rut and your girlfriend (Cyrina Fiallo) is stuck somewhere between wanting to walk down the aisle and wanting to walk out the door. Desperate for a break, Sal and his buddy Tim (Chad Jamian) place a million dollar idea in the hands of a high-powered brand broker named Joshua Vandersteem (Brian Silliman). 

If you're guessing that this doesn't go well, you're correct. 

Determined to right how they've been wronged, a plan to kidnap Vandersteem goes wildly awry and everything in The Mix keeps escalating from that point on. 

One of the latest films to come out of the Comedy Dynamics distribution channel, The Mix is a low-budget indie co-directed by Mollica with Greg Townsend that experienced quite a bit of success on the film festival circuit including wins for Best Comedy and Best Actress at the Chain NYC Film Festival and Best Feature Screenplay at the Tampa Bay Underground Film Festival. 

The Mix benefits greatly from its terrific ensemble cast with special kudos going to Cyrina Fiallo as Christine, whose persona is one of quiet groundedness and subtle lunacy. Fiallo's Christine is largely the film's emotional core, a necessary element that keeps our sympathies with Sal and Tim even as they make bad decisions. Mollica's Sal is also rock solid, while Chad Jamian's comically nerdish Tim gives the film many of its laugh out loud moments. As the narcissistic brand broker, Brian Silliman is loud, boisterous and immensely fun. 

The Mix is plagued by the usual issues that impact many low-budget films including an occasional muddy sound mix and imagery that occasionally goes a bit cloudy before the scene is complete. These are relatively modest distractions, though those who are primarily used to multiplex cinema may find it noticeably distracting. 

Essentially a dark comedy, The Mix never quite goes dark enough in telling the story of one man whose bad choices keep snowballing to the point where there may be no turning back. Still, the film tells a unique, funny story brought nicely to life by an ensemble cast that seems in sync with one another in all the best ways. This may not be the best comedy you'll see in 2017, but it's a worthy addition to your streaming rotation and a great way to support up-and-comers. 

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic 

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