Eddie follows the exploits of the titular Eddie (Lindsay Johnson), a struggling actor in 1984. After countless auditions, Eddie tries to stay positive in the wake of constant rejection and mounting pressure to give up his dream. His main support comes from his best friend, Johnny (Lancelot E. Theobald Jr.), a dance instructor and self-professed ladies’ man. Eddie searches for work to provide for his family, love to support himself, and a role to fulfill his passion when a director (Robert Reynolds) finally casts him in a production. Will Eddie’s dream now come true, or is the cost just too high?
From here, writer/director Frederick Sciretta’s drama shifts its focus between the grind of an up-and-coming actor and the dysfunctions of the protagonist’s personal life. Facing constant pressures from his father (Mel Hunter), Eddie’s dream becomes stagnant as he must support his family financially. This conflict of destiny is only further complicated when Eddie meets the potential love of his life Lili (Jasmine Frankel). Now, he finds himself torn between family, love, and his passion for the stage.
“…searches for work to provide for his family, love to support himself, and a role to fulfill his passion.”
Eddie is one-part show business examination and one-part family drama. The film is at its best when it depicts Eddie’s love for his craft and desire to be great. Seeing the lengths he goes to for an audition expands on the character and engages the viewer. Even the friendship between Eddie and Johnny displays a love for the acting scene and grounds Eddie as a character. There are fun scenes between the two friends as their interactions actively expand on the themes in a lively way.
However, when it shifts to a family drama, things begin to feel a bit forced. As a character, Eddie faces struggles at home, such as disapproval of a parent, but these moments often lack the same tension or stakes as the chasing one’s dream plot thread. Due to this imbalance of storylines, the tone of each does not seem to match one another, making for an awkward the climax.
Eddie quickly engaged me in the exploits of the lead character to become a star. The movie industry aspects are compelling and feel most authentic. However, the family drama feels out of place, and the time jumps rob the viewer of seeing Eddie’s personal growth first-hand. Still, Sciretta’s effort is worth a watch, thanks to decent acting and the passion beneath it all. But I did leave the film wishing to see more of Eddie in the spotlight rather than his family’s melodrama. I would recommend the movie to fans of indie dream-fulfilling dramas like All Those Small Things or even Sweet Parents.
"…worth a watch, thanks to decent acting and the passion beneath it all."