Maxie Image


By Bobby LePire | January 10, 2024

Written and directed by Jarrett Bryant, Maxie follows the titular character (Miles Dixon) and his girlfriend Sid (Liv Tavernier). The young adults are unhoused, begging on the street for money. They’re in this predicament due to their drug addiction issues. However, they’ve vowed to finally get clean on their own and go look for jobs.

Sid’s brother, Nathan (Malakhai Schnell), has just been released after a stint in prison. He still owes some shady figures money. Nathan figures he could pull one over on his sister and her paramour. But Maxie and Sid’s problems, which run deeper than anyone realizes, may upend Nathan’s poorly thought-out scheme before it even begins. Will Maxie and Sid get clean? Do they even really want to? Can Nathan find the money he needs to get out of trouble?

Maxie gives a face to something many people struggle with every day. While the two leads are severely flawed, Maxie and Sid gain the audience’s sympathy immediately. Fighting gives way to serious discussions of their lives together. They feel real, giving the story the ever-important gravity that sells the ending so well.

“…vowed to finally get clean on their own and go look for jobs.”

Dixon’s tics show the side effects of drugs without entering cartoon territory. Tavernier’s speech about wanting to call a lady now, not tomorrow, is moving. Schnell sells Nathan’s desperation with ease. The supporting cast, especially Hope Garcia, also feels authentic.

Bryant makes the outside locations engulf the leads. They seem directionless and small in frame, mirroring how they feel in their lives. Editor/director of photography Henry Huntington splices in several shocking moments of strange beings in masks. They are hallucinations from the drugs and are also creepy when they appear.

Maxie runs a little too long, but it still works. The story is grounded and thoroughly investing. The cast is excellent, and the editing believably sells the characters’ messed-up mindset.

For more information, visit the official Maxie site.

Maxie (2022)

Directed and Written: Jarrett Bryant

Starring: Miles Dixon, Liv Tavernier, Malakhai Schnell, Hope Garcia, etc.

Movie score: 8.5/10

Maxie Image

"…grounded and thoroughly investing."

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