Michael Simon's debut shows that he has genuine promise as a comedic filmmaker. Simon had already hinted at that capacity with his short film Gay Zombie, but with this, his first feature, the diagnosis is clear. Simon is funny.
The Love Patient premiered at Qfest in Philadelphia. On the same day, around the same time and in the same theater, another movie was also making a premiere. That movie was Bite Marks. I bring it up because the two movies share a few commonalities.
Tone and stylistic parallels aside, the most ostensible commonalities are the pair of actors who star in both. One of which is John Werskey whose role in Bite Marks was that of a mechanic who falls under the spell of an evil woman. Here, Werskey's character of Brad Bond falls under the spell of a conniving advertising executive.
Werskey is sweet, sexy and the perfect object of affection for this romantic comedy. The star, however, is Benjamin Lutz who's the real standout here. In as much as Lutz's character of Paul Richards is the conniving advertising executive, he still in many ways is very much an object of affection for the audience.
In my review of Bite Marks, I noted that Lutz was something special. I wrote, "From his line readings, his facial expressions to his entire physical reactions to certain things, this guy just had me laughing my head off." Lutz brings that same spirit to The Love Patient. He's hilarious and has proven with these two performances that he can handle material like this that admittedly is ridiculous. Yet, he has fun with the ridiculousness and allows the audience to have fun with it too.
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