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The A Plate (Review)

A good, enjoyable film

by Randy Krinsky

The A Plate is the latest film by writer/director Terre Weisman and Osiris Entertainment.  This romantic comedy revolves around Jay Roth (Shane Jacobsen), an ambitious, young sales manager in the fast-paced world of a car dealership. Jay loves his job and dreams of one day owning his own dealership and getting the ever-elusive “A-Plate.”

The “A-Plate,” or dealer plate, is the definitive status symbol in the car sales biz.  Unfortunately, Dick Stevens (Sam McMurray), car dealer and Jay’s boss, refuses to take him on as a partner.  However, Dick’s hold on his dealership comes into question when his wife, Candice (Priscilla Barnes), catches him having sex with his receptionist, Tracy (Erika Smith).  With Candice threatening divorce, Jay sees the perfect opportunity to get a piece of the dealership.  Jay’s quest for his “A-Plate” is made all the more difficult when he meets Andrea (Julie Ann Emery), Dick’s smart, beautiful-but-off-limits daughter.  Jay is torn between his immoral tactics and his growing feelings for Andrea.

How will Jay navigate the sex and deceit of the cutthroat world of car sales in order to attain his “A-Plate,” and still be the perfect man for Andrea? Can he have them both?

The A Plate
Directed by Terre Weisman
Cast Shane Jacobsen, Sam McMurray, Julie Ann Emery, Priscilla Barnes
Release Date 2 June 2015
Randy's Grade: B

The A Plate is a fun watch.  The acting is superb and I really began to care about what was happening to the characters in the film. Jay Roth is portrayed by Shane Jacobsen (“American Crime”).  I liked Shane; he makes Jay endearing even while scheming. I thought the chemistry was good between him and Julie Ann Emery (“Better Call Saul”).  Priscilla Barnes, perhaps best remembered for her role in TV’s “Three’s Company,” stars as the scorned wife putting her husband through the ringer.  This is a role she seems born for and I truly think she was outstanding, given that she is only in a handful of scenes.  Sam McMurray (“Cristela”, “King of Queens”) delivers another first-rate performance as the amoral husband who’s trying to keep from getting divorced, not only because he wants to keep his dealership, but because he genuinely still loves his wife. Seriously, this guy is in everything!  He’s a solid actor and the perfect mixture of attitude, dramatics and comedy. Add a cast of dysfunctional dealership employees and customers and this film delivers the laughs. The beautiful Erika Smith co-stars as the uninhibited Tracy Spence, Dick’s receptionist, who not only got caught having sex with her boss, but isn’t above using sex to get what she wants from Jay as well.  She’s a bit of a freak but her loveable attitude is hard not to adore. The film earns cool points for the entertaining cameo by Ted Arcidi, formerly the world’s strongest man, as Chuck the plumber. However, the scene-stealer has got to be Angelo Nargi.  His portrayal of Jay’s grandfather, Charlie, is both funny and inspiring.  He’s the voice of wisdom, even while his early dementia causes chaos and added stress for Jay!

I’m not going to bore you with an overly intricate film analysis of the mise-en-scene, or talk about the cinematography and lighting; this isn’t that kind of film.  Suffice it to say that it all came together nicely and was well shot.  There is nothing groundbreaking here; just a good, enjoyable film. I appreciated the story and thought it had just the right amount of romance and drama that mixed well with the comedy. I really loved the running gag about the whip cream (when you see it, you’ll understand…).  Do yourself a favor and watch The A Plate.  It’s cute and witty with just the right amount of under-handed salesmanship to win your heart.  By the end, you’ll be sold too!

The A Plate will be available on Dish Network, Amazon, Blockbuster on Demand, iTunes, Playstation, Vudu, Xbox and YouTube.

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