One Fall

One Fall

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One Fall is a bafflingly lame assemblage of self-help platitudes, the sort of film in which every narrative detail is specifically placed to pave the way for a pat moral you’ve grasped before the opening credits have barely concluded. In the opening scene, a man named, seriously, James Bond (played by director Marcus Dean Fuller) is released from prison after serving a brief stretch for pointedly mysterious reasons that will, of course, come up again. James, who projects rebellion and disillusionment with the obvious harmlessness of a fifth grader flipping his teacher the bird behind her back, returns to his hometown of One Fall, where he’d left a number of hurt, confused loved ones in his wake, including his now-sick father, his former fiancée, and a smug, ambitious doctor brother. We also learn that James himself was once a promising medical student before taking one fall off of a 200-foot cliff called One Fall in his hometown, which, in case you’ve forgotten, is also called One Fall. (By this point, I was relieved that Fuller and his co-writer hadn’t called his character something along the lines of O.F. All.)

James is also, again seriously, a healer, as one strong embrace from him can cure someone of a previously incurable malady, which means, of course, that Fuller eventually trots out a cancer patient for maximum emotional exploitation. But James can’t heal his ailing father for reasons that will once again remain pointedly vague until the end of the film, and so he must sort through his emotional wreckage with a little introspection, and perhaps a little tough love.

One Fall bullies you with its idiotic obviousness: James suffers a fall and must stand up again, like all of us from time to time, while his healing embraces are meant to signal the power of forgiveness (or something like that). The film is meant as a cleansing tale of redemption, but it’s so poorly acted and ineptly written and directed that it wouldn’t pass muster as the pilot for a particularly asinine soap on the WB station.

89 min
Marcus Dean Fuller
Marcus Dean Fuller, Richard Greenberg
Marcus Dean Fuller, Mark La Mura, James McCaffrey, Zoe McLellan, Seamus Mulcahy, Phyllis Somerville