on December 10, 2004 by Kim Williamson
One can expect darkness and density from a film that opens with a quote from Kafka ("a belief is like a guillotine, just as heavy, just as light"), and first-time writer/director Ari Kirschenbaum delivers both in this 2002-made psycho-brooder. In "Fabled," Joseph Fable (Desmond Askew of 1999's "Go"), a rich young man who nonetheless holds a meaningless office job and thinks his former girlfriend Liz ("Going the Distance's" Katheryn Winnick) was sleeping around before their unofficial breakup, is either the target of the wiles of said gal and her psychiatrist ("Eulogy's" Michael Panes, who seems more like a music major than an M.D. of the mind)--or his liquor-with-pharmaceuticals practices are driving him insane, which is what friend Alex (an effective J. Richey Nash) believes. There's a subplot involving an apparent murder by Joseph for Alex that is never integrated into the storyline.

Thanks in part to Yaron Orbach's moody-blue lensing and a techno soundtrack by Simple Simon and Jack Lingo, "Fabled" is relatively riveting material--for a film whose main plot also seems never integrated. Like the recent romantic thriller "Wicker Park," what makes the telling work is the telling itself, replete with jazzed images, portending growls and a Grimm's-fairytale-type narration by a little girl (Della Askew). Like its tagline, "Fabled" seems heavy in the darkness of the cinema, though on exiting it will go as light as wisps. Starring Desmond Askew, J. Richey Nash, Michael Panes and Katheryn Winnick. Directed and written by Ari Kirschenbaum. Produced by Peter I. Sabat and Rob Bellsey. An Indican release. Psychological horror. Not yet rated. Running time: 84 min

Tags: Starring Desmond Askew, J. Richey Nash, Michael Panes, Katheryn Winnick, Directed and written by Ari Kirschenbaum, Produced by Peter I. Sabat, Rob Bellsey

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