|© 2006 by C. E. Murphy. All Rights Reserved.
2006 TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL
THE BIG BAD SWIM marks the feature film directorial debut of
Ishai Setton and the feature screenwriting debut of Daniel Schecter.
Both show promise with this ensemble comedy-drama about individuals
brought together by an adult swim class in Southeastern Connecticut.
They are a disparate group, but the movie makers have opted to focus on
three major character's and their stories. Hunky instructor Noah Owens
(Jeff Branson of the TV daytime drama ALL MY CHILDREN), is a former
Olympic hopeful whose dreams were dashed by a knee injury. Amy
Pierson (Paget Brewster of the Showtime series HUFF), is a fortyish
high school math instructor whose marriage to a fellow teacher is
crumbling. Jordan Gallagher (Jess Weixler) is a twentysomething
who makes a living as a card dealer at the Mohegan Sun casino by day
and an exotic dancer by evening.
Noah is depressed over his failed Olympic bid. He's also the
object of lust among several of his students, including Jordan, who
despite her work, is actually rather shy. She and Amy strike up a
friendship that despite their age differences actually rings true, thanks
to the actresses' terrific performances and Schecter's script.
My one quibble with the film is that several subplots, like
a video project that involves Jordan's younger brother (who attends
the school where Amy teaches), feel underdeveloped or even