Review of Any Day Now
on 2012-11-21 14:47
Movie Review: 'Any Day Now' - Powerful and poignant, ‘Any Day Now’ tells the story of a gay couple in 1970’s California fighting to keep custody of a mentally handicapped teenager they have taken in as their own. Rudy (Alan Cumming) and Paul’s (Garret Dillahunt) relationship quickly takes a back seat to the incredibly touching story of two men giving everything they can to take on a biased legal system, refusing to let their ‘son’ Marco (Isaac Leyva) become a child of the state.
‘Any Day Now’ is a heavy film. While there are scattered moments of laughter and happiness, it’s clear director Travis Fine is focused on placing the audience in the center of this story, which is based on an actual series of events.
The film opens in a bar as Rudy (Cumming) meets Paul (Dillahunt). The two have an immediate connection, despite Paul’s hesitation to live openly as a gay man and Rudy’s job as a professional drag queen.
Initially, Rudy appears to be a lost soul. He’s behind on his rent, aspiring to become a professional singer despite any of the resources necessary to do so.
The night Rudy comes home from meeting Paul, he finds his neighbor Marco (Leyva)—a mentally handicapped teenager—locked out of his apartment by his drug-addict mother. The moment Marco’s mother fails to return the next morning, Rudy is moved to step in and help Marco from then on.
Not long after, Marco’s mother is arrested, placing Marco with the state. Only wishing to return home, Marco wanders back to the apartment building where he finds Rudy. After a few days of taking care of Marco, Rudy enlists his new boyfriend Paul’s legal services and together they convince Marco’s mother to grant them temporary custody of the boy while she is in prison.
The three move into Paul’s apartment, enlist Marco in school, and live for some time as a happy family, despite having to publicly hide the fact that they are a gay couple raising a child.
As a director, Fine does an excellent job of illustrating what life was like for two men attempting to start a family together in 1970’s California. While some people are entirely supportive, the vast majority is not so accepting, making every aspect of life that much more difficult.
When Paul’s boss discovers that Rudy is not in fact Paul’s cousin, their entire life begins to unravel. Paul is immediately fired, and his former boss has Marco removed from his home and placed in foster care.
It quickly becomes heartbreakingly evident that Paul and Rudy are fighting an uphill battle to get their son back from the state. Marco does his best to express his desire to return to the only home he has ever felt comfortable, but his pleas are largely dismissed on account of his mental handicap.
‘Any Day Now’ has a unique ability to be both dark and at the same time heart breaking. Alan Cumming delivers a relentless performance that keeps audiences emotionally tied right to the movie’s end.
Only sadness and tragedy follow as the couple continues to fight for their son, culminating in a final scene that leaves audiences tearful long after the credits.
Length: 97 minutes
Directed By: Travis Fine
Genre: Independent Film/Drama