Introducing Jodea a Modern My Fair Lady

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Introducing Jodea

Chloe Traicos and Jeff Coppage headline this charming romantic indie take on My Fair Lady.

Introducing Jodea finds Traicos portraying the titular Jodea Maxwell, a struggling actress who takes menial jobs and stage hand positions while waiting for her big break. There's only one problem with this dream: Jodea couldn't act her way out of a wet paper sack.

Director Zac Kawalski (Coppage) has issues of his own. His wife, Isabella (Yadira Pascault Orozco), is the leading lady in his newest action flick, and feels the demands of the role are beneath her. Struggling with her petulance and infidelity, Zac says the only thing that could save his film is to get action heavyweight Ethan Burns (Kayd Currier) cast as the leading man -- while he looks for an unknown to play the female role. Zac's agent (Kent Hatch) says he could get Ethan for Zac if he really wanted to, but Zac's tumultuous past with drugs and confrontations have made him persona non grata with many in the industry.

Zac and Jodea's worlds collide -- literally -- when Zac rear-ends her vehicle, setting off a chain of events that brings Jodea into his office just as he's telling his agent about his desire to cast an unknown. Knowing the lines from a pivotal scene, Jodea launches into the worst interpretation possible, goading Zac's agent into making a bet: If Zac can get a performance out of Jodea in one week, he'll get Ethan Burns to play the lead.

As Zac battles to teach Jodea the finer aspects of acting, he gets some real-world lessons in return, as the two grow closer and openly honest with each other. But as the date approaches for the new film to launch, forces conspire to drive a wedge between the two of them, threatening their happily ever after.

Directed by Jon Cohen and written by Traicos, Introducing Jodea is a prime example of story trumping special effects. There's no huge budget at play here, and no persistent musical score underpinning every scene to create mood. Everything relies on the actors to keep the audience focused, as we follow along with the awkward, the comedic, and the emotionally tragic and triumphant moments that knit this film together.

Critical Blast had the opportunity to interview Introducing Jodea writer/actor Chloe Traicos. See the video below for that conversation.

Grade: 
4.0 / 5.0