Best Foot Forward 

One Foot in the Gutter: Hey There, Deadbeat BFFs!

ONE FOOT IN THE GUTTER Not pictured: Any feet, a gutter.

ONE FOOT IN THE GUTTER Not pictured: Any feet, a gutter.

MARSHALL WANTS OUT. He's a self-proclaimed loser, going nowhere in a small Oregon town. He's just drunkenly crashed his buddy's car and now has the choice of rehab or a week in jail. He's planning to head to Colorado, where he can enter a clinic and get his life on track. Unfortunately, his pack of well-meaning but degenerate friends won't let him leave.

One Foot in the Gutter is a simple, succinct film from local director Justin Koleszar, and it centers on Marshall's (Geoff Stewart) final night at home. His friends Daniel (Nick Ferrucci), White (Zach Sanchez), and Marc (Benjamin Parslow) want to throw him a goodbye party, but they can't even really manage to do that. So they hang around their filthy shared house, calling all the girls they know, virtually forcing beers down the newly sober Marshall's throat. Some friends, right?

Shot locally for 15 grand, One Foot in the Gutter admirably succeeds in small details—of unshakeable friendship, of disappearing youth, of insurmountable desperation. Koleszar's film is rewardingly graceful, with poetic camerawork from Ryan Kunkleman and strong performances from the entire cast. Sanchez, in particular, skillfully handles the balance of menace and conviviality. Gutter's a striking and memorable film from a rising local talent.

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