Quid Pro Quo

Quid Pro Quo

Director: Carlos Brooks Cast: Nick Stahl, Vera Farmiga, Jacob Pitts
4.0 1

DVD (Wide Screen / Subtitled)

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Quid Pro Quo 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Helpful Note: Wikipedia definition: Quid pro quo (Latin for &quot something for something&quot ) indicates a more-or-less equal exchange or substitution of goods or services. Carlos Brooks makes an impressive debut as both writer and director of this little independent film QUID PRO QUO, a story that may make some viewers uncomfortable because of the subject matter, but an intelligent investigation of a subculture unknown to most and a script that leads to a surprising ending - if the viewer keeps thinking after the rolling credits are over! Isaac (Nick Stahl) is a reporter for a small radio station, a role that gives him the opportunity to uncover novel human interest stories for his audience. Interestingly, Isaac is a paraplegic, confined to a wheelchair since age 8 when he was the survivor of a car crash that killed both his parents. He has full function of most of his body, but cannot walk. Isaac receives an email from one 'Ancient Chinese Girl' that contains a message about a person who convinced a doctor to amputate a normal leg. Isaac is fascinated and sets out to investigate the story and eventually discovers the source of the email - one young and very beautiful Fiona (Vera Farmiga) - who introduces him to a subculture of people who want to be wheelchair bound: in a group meeting Isaac hears strange stories from a disparate group of people who meet to discuss their obsession with being paralyzed, their chance to be noticed and cared about as quasi-invalids who would go so far as having an amputation of a normal limb to enable their wheelchair dreams. Isaac soon discovers that Fiona shares this obsession, demonstrates her secrets to Isaac, and the two begin to bond physically and emotionally. Isaac is the first person to see Fiona make her 'debut' in public in a wheelchair. They share lunch in a cafe and share their life experiences: Isaac confesses that he harbors foreshortened memory of his accident - his last memory is lying in the road seeing a young girl with red and white pompoms trying to save him. Isaac surprises himself (and shares his surprise with Fiona) when he buys a pair of 'Fred Astaire shoes', and upon trying them on, he is able to walk! Fiona's response is mixed - she is happy that Isaac is ambulatory but at the same time she is led to believe that Isaac's paralysis may be of an hysterical nature, that he really has never been paralyzed except as a reaction to the guilt he harbors about his parent's death and his sole survivorship of the accident. How these two people deal with the information as it develops provides a startling ending to this story, a detective mystery that in retrospect proves to have given us, the audience, countless clues throughout the film - clues only discovered in retrospect! Both Nick Stahl and Vera Farmiga give vital performances, able to draw us in to their odd characters and make us care. There are many fine cameo roles - Kate Burton as Fiona's mother, James Frain as Isaac's priest friend, and all the members of the wannabe wheelchair bound group - and the cinematography by Michael McDonough is both appropriately claustrophobic indoors and transcendently beautiful in the tulip fields of Skagit Valley, WA used as the setting for the upstate New York accident location. Mark Mothersbaugh ties the moods of the film together with his expert musical score. This is a tough little film to watch, but a film that supplies much gratification and challenge. It is a fine debut for Carlos Brooks. Recommended. Grady Harp