America moves at a fast pace. Fast internet, fast-paced movies, fast cars, fast sex — or so I’ve heard, fast-forward, and fast food.
Often the joke is made that soon we’ll have drive-in therapists, and with the way Jesse Dykstra paints his short crowd pleaser, it’s not a far off concept. Inevitably we’ll have a line of cars pulling up to a window as people seek quick counseling for the day, leaving with nuggets of advice to get through a problem.
“Christopher Brennan Saves the World” is a film that tells the story of a young fast food drive-in worker who also manages to serve as a therapist to anyone willing to seek his guidance. It’s a consequence of mere circumstance, and now he can’t stop it. And he doesn’t want to stop it. Christopher is an irrelevant fast food worker who gains a sense of importance by helping one person at a time.
Dykstra’s film examines three key elements: How important good advice can be to someone, how lost and lonely even the wisest person can be, and how good advice brings with it an immense and somewhat burdening responsibility. Where do the advisors go when they need advice? What happens when the patients become too reliant on your help?
Thus is the conundrum Christopher experiences when he is confronted with his crush Julie Parker who drives up one night to ask for advice, and this puts him in an anxious fit. We then discover he really has no clue, even though he confers with everyone about life.
Evan Lee Dahl’s performance as the Fast Food Freud who takes customer after customer and provides some rather amazing insight, in spite of the fact he can’t even find himself a date, is very entertaining; he’s a humble and likable guy who only has the best intentions at heart. Christopher may know life, but, as every other man, he has no clue about romance. But everything backfires when a client swoops in and grabs his goal, and hopeless patients crowd to the window.
He learns that regardless of the hours put in, you can’t save everyone, especially people who continue to get themselves into trouble. Dykstra’s short slice of life is a bright and complex piece of dramedy with morals about life, love, and the endless troubles we feel the need to solve.
Christopher shows that no matter how wise you are, you can still manage to be completely clueless, and lonely. When the doldrums of your job consume your time, you miss out on life, and potentially life changing opportunities, and Chris is a tragic sum of the problem. He’s a man with all answers, yet no solutions.