Joss Whedon is a man of many trades. When he’s not utilizing comic book heroes to defeat alien evil, he’s creating equally interesting characters on a much smaller scale, like 2012’s micro-budgeted Much Ado About Nothing (based on the Shakespeare play). This year, his indie feature is a romantic dramedy known as In Your Eyes. Although you won’t see him in the director’s chair again until 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, Whedon scripted (and produced) the film (directed by Brin Hill; Won’t Back Down), which premiered at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival to pretty positive reviews.
In Your Eyes follows quiet Rebecca, played by Zoe Kazan (Ruby Sparks), who is stuck in a life of repetitive cocktail get-togethers and lonely nights as the wife of a doctor. Across the country, ex-con Dylan, played by Michael Stahl-David (Cloverfield), is struggling to land on his feet again. Despite the distance, these two polar opposites realize they share an inexplicable connection and a metaphysical romance begins in typical Whedonesque fashion.
“These characters do have a lot that’s different, but I think they share a sense of wanting more out of their lives and there’s this outlet that they suddenly have (which is each other),” said Stahl-David of his character’s connection with Rebecca.
Because the two don’t physically interact for most of the movie, Stahl-David said it was initially difficult to play out scenes.
“Honestly, at first it was hard, then you got used to it; there was an intimacy where you felt alone in a way where you also felt free,” said Stahl-David. There’s something about hearing Zoe, feeling her with me, that she not only manifested, but brought out people from my life and my imagination in one because her face wasn’t there and allowed me to adjust and perform, said Stahl-David.
And then there’s Donna, played by Nikki Reed (The Twilight Saga, Thirteen), who comes into play as Dylan’s simple, naïve “default” woman (one he does physically interact with).
“I think Donna’s much needed comic-relief; Donna represents a big part of Dylan’s life that needs to be explained and understood –she is sweet, kind, beautiful but she doesn’t get him even though she accepts him,” Reed said.
Personally, I can’t wait to check the film out as Kazan refers to it as “Joss Whedon meets Nicholas Sparks.” What can I say, I’m a sucker for (smart) unique love stories.
The film is now available as a $5.00 digital rental at http://inyoureyesmovie.com/.