One… two… three… four… five… six…. Seven… I’m counting the drops from a leaky pipe down in the Buzz Kill basement. You know Richard; you really need to get this fixed. I might have to call the union. Do I have a union? Ah, right on time the TV is coming to life and casting everything into the soft haze of blue while the movie is downloading. What will it be this time… the suspense is killing me….”A Bag of Hammers.” Somewhat appropriate with these leak issues we’ve been having.
Every once in a while a movie’s description does not give that movie justice and because of this description a movie may not get the attention it deserves. “A Bag of Hammers” is one such movie. The basic description presents this movie as a comedy that follows two car thieves that are forced to grow up when they find themselves responsible for a neighbor’s son. While accurate in the description, it leaves out this movie is thought provoking and emotionally charged.
“A Bag of Hammers” stars Jason Ritter (son of the late John Ritter), Jake Sandvig, Rebecca Hall, and Chandler Canterbury. Ben (Ritter) and Alan (Sandvig) are two best friends that live together and steal cars by posing as valet parkers at funerals. Alan’s sister Melanie (Hall), who wishes for the two to find real jobs and stop risking being caught, questions theirs morals. As questionable as the two friends morals are, they do give a single mom and her son a much needed break by renting a home to her for a reduced price while she struggles to get back on her feet.
The woman’s son, Kelsey (Canterbury) is a precocious eleven year old who takes a shine to Ben and Alan and offers to trade Penthouse magazines with the two friends much to their shock and amazement. The boy is sweet and mild mannered enough, but life is not what it seems. Inside the rented home, the house is in disarray with obvious signs of neglect as the boy’s mother spun into depression and desperation when no jobs become available to her. She’s overly harsh and expects too much from an eleven year old boy, but the movie is done is such a way that the audience almost pities her allowing its viewers to see two sides of the coin. She’s suffering, but doesn’t know how to express it other than to take her own life.
After the mother’s death Ben and Alan, who grew up in a group home along with Melanie know what fate awaits the newly orphaned Kelsey and takes great measures to prevent it. What follows is an emotional roller coaster of thought-provoking concepts of what a family is and what do you do with your own bag of hammers. Well written and well performed.
Please… stop… I can’t handle it anymore. What a beautiful movie, but can I please have an action movie… please?!