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
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.
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