Revered out of the Sundance Film Festival, actor-turned-filmmaker Fran Kranz’s directing debut “Mass” is a four-hander anchored by four powerhouse performances. Martha Plimpton, Jason Isaacs, Ann Dowd, and Reed Birney play two couples convening to discuss a violent crime that’s brought them together. Bleecker Street opens the film in New York City and Los Angeles on October 8, with a national rollout to follow. Watch the trailer for the film below.
Here’s the official synopsis courtesy of Bleecker Street: “Years after an unspeakable tragedy tore their lives apart, two sets of parents (Jason Isaacs and Martha Plimpton, Reed Birney and Ann Dowd) agree to talk privately in an attempt to move forward. In Fran Kranz’ writing and directing debut, he thoughtfully examines their journey of grief, anger and acceptance by coming face-to-face with the ones who have been left behind.”
In IndieWire’s review out of Sundance, David Ehrlich wrote, A” single-location drama about four people sitting in a sterile church anteroom and discussing — at length, and in real-time — the unequally shared tragedy that split their lives down the middle, ‘Mass’ is so anti-cinematic at every turn that it almost comes as a surprise that it wasn’t adapted from a play or shot during COVID. And yet, at no point does this sobering and worthwhile feature debut from actor Fran Kranz (‘The Cabin in the Woods’) feel like it shouldn’t have been a movie, or that it could’ve been anything else.”
The review continues, “This mercifully reserved film is light on big moments, but Dowd aces its riskiest and most vulnerable monologue, as Linda offers a nuanced and all-too-human defense that the court of public opinion would never abide. ‘The truth is we believed we were good parents,’ she confesses, ‘and in some awful, disturbing way, we still do.’ The world would like her to believe that her son’s life had no value because of the heinous way he chose to end it, but the truth is never that simple. But it’s Birney — the film’s least recognizable actor tasked with playing its least likable character — who emerges as the MVP before all is said and done, as it’s Richard who ultimately sells us on the fact that some things are possible in this room that would be impossible anywhere else.”