Life in Color, an indie movie about depressed losers

Josh McDermitt and Katharine Emmer in Life in Color

Life in Color is a popular title. The particular version under discussion today is a 2015 independent film written by, directed by, and starring Katharine Emmer. You can find it on Prime Video.

Life in Color tells about Mary (Katharine Emmer) and Homer (Josh McDermitt). She’s working as a nanny. He’s working as a clown at kids’ birthday parties. They meet at one such birthday party and smoke weed by the trash bins together. This gets Mary fired.

Katharine Emmer in Life in Color
Katharine Emmer was the star, the director, and the writer.

Both of them are depressed to the point of inertia. Without the nanny gig, Mary has no where to go and no friends to call. Homer lets her stay with him at a place he’s house sitting. Homer’s old high school buddy Adam (Adam Lustick) is scheduled to be gone three weeks. They have that much time in his apartment to find jobs and places to live.

Josh McDermitt and Katharine Emmer in Life in Color

Somehow these two bitterly depressed and miserable people lift each other up. They egg each other on. Mary wants to be an architect. She got in one semester of college before she quit because her grandmother was ill and needed her. Homer wants to be a stand-up comedian. He thinks shredded lettuce is funny.

As they get acquainted during the three weeks, Mary talks Homer into entering a comedy competition with a big wad of prize money. Homer talks to her about going back to school. Even through the depression that plagues them both, they see the value in the other person.

Mary gets a job watching a depressed teen Emma (Emma Daily). Homer calls her the vampire. They go to the family’s vacation home in Palm Springs. Emma walks off and Mary and Homer don’t even look for her. Instead they enjoy the beautiful place they are in with happy connectedness.

I wouldn’t call this a romcom, although it fits the pattern. I wouldn’t call it a happy ending, although the ending is far brighter than the beginning. This is a unique story about unique people – the kind of look at life you most often get from indie filmmakers with something original to say.

All the actors did excellent work. It was a big cast (including Fortune Feimster). They all stepped into their parts with verve. As the tone of the film progressed from depression to hope, the actors did a fine job of making subtle growth changes real and believable.

If you like quiet films about real people and real life, this little gem should hit the spot.

See what you think of the trailer.

Does this look like a film you might enjoy? If you do watch it, please share your thoughts on it.

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