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The Woman in White Marble

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Day of Days

A Film by Kim Bass

Day of Days is available for purchase at:

iTunes
Amazon.com


About the People

Director:
Kim Bass

Kim Bass

Kim Bass was born on February 16, 1956 (age 61), in Frankfort, New York. He has worked in both television and film as a writer, director, and producer. In TV Bass created Sister, Sister and Kenan & Kel. He was a writer for In Living Color. His film work includes Junkyard Dog and Kill Speed. Bass is also one of the founders of the independent production company Bass Entertainment Pictures.

To learn more about Kim Bass click here.

Writers:
Kim Bass, Kyle Bass

Kyle Bass


Kyle Bass
co-authored Day of Days and is also the author of Cry for Peace: Voices from the Congo with Ping Chong. Kyle has twice been awarded the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, for fiction in 1998 and for playwriting in 2010, which resulted in the play Name the Street. He was also a finalist for the Princess Grace Playwriting Award for Wind in the Field.

To learn more about Kyle Bass click here.

 

Actors:
Tom Skerritt, Claudia Zevallos

Tom Skerritt and Claudia Zevallos won best actor awards for their performances in Day of Days, awarded by the 11th annual Women’s International Film & Arts Festival held in Miami, Florida November 3-6, 2016.
For more information click here.

Tom Skerritt

 

Tom Skerritt was born on August 25, 1933 in Detroit Michigan. He has appeared in over 40 films and 200 television episodes. Tom is probably best known for his roles in MASH, Alien, Top Gun, and A River Runs Through It.

For a thorough list of his performances and more about his life click here.

 

 

 

Claudia Zevallos

 

Claudia Zevallos, born on August 4, 1986, is a Peruvian actor who who moved to Los Angeles to study at the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute and the Beverly Hills Playhouse. Her film work includes A Better Place, Shelter, and El Derecho de Jesús. Claudia has also appeared in Spanish language television and in national commercials.

To learn more about Claudia Zevallos click here.

 

 

Film Synopsis

Ninety-one year old retired Los Angeles bus driver and World War II veteran Walter Raymond Leland (Tom Skerritt) has a dream in which God tells him he will die that day. Walter, divorced may years ago, has become estranged from his son and has lived his life in solitude during his 20 years of retirement. His life has taken on a certain uniformity, but he is not a character to be pitied. He accepts the routines of his life with some grace.

On the day in which his dream says he will die, his regular care worker is unable to come. In her stead comes Marisol Angelica (Claudia Zevallos). Marisol, originally from Cuba, came to the United States ten years ago. Her three year old son, Mateo, drowned during the crossing from Cuba to Florida. His body was never found. On the day that Walter thinks he will die, it also would have been Mateo’s thirteenth birthday.

What transpires between Walter and Marisol in his small L.A. home on this special day touches upon what most makes us human: humor, sorrow, anger, loss, redemption, forgiveness, acceptance, and relationship.


Reviews

Let me begin with the mundane, though still important, aspects of this rather spiritual film. In Day of Days the writing is sublime, the acting wonderful, and the filming beautiful. The script was written by Kim Bass and Kyle Bass and they wrote a story that avoided sentimentality while being both dramatic and poignant. The characters, Walter Raymond Leland (Tom Skerritt) and Marisol Angelica (Claudia Zevallos), are authentic and likeable even in the midst of their respective considerable struggles. The relationship that grows between them is also real, not contrived or unconvincing. If that relationship had failed, so too would the entire film.

Skerritt and Zevallos are to be applauded. Both Walter and Marisol carry burdens that have undone many good people. To portray the characters as both hurting and yet genuinely and realistically redeemable must have been difficult. Skerritt plays the 91-year-old Walter, and as I watched I felt the aches, pains, and emotional weariness, but also the energy, determination, and faith of a man who has accepted his lot. Zevallos plays a woman emotionally and spiritually bent with the weight of loss, yet still caring enough not just to keep going, but to plan for the future as she serves others.

The film takes place in a small Los Angeles house. We see two rooms: Walter’s bedroom and his front room, which is both a living space and a kitchen. The blinds are drawn, rendering the rooms dark. And yet the film is beautifully shot, playing with the light that is available, adding both pathos and hope to the scenes. The movie is essentially two people talking, but it is filmed with a creativity that avoids boredom.

The “action” takes place in these two rooms. If you yearn to watch a movie with scenes longer than two or three seconds, where characters actually have conversations that mean something, that is not just one damn thing after another (nonstop car chases, explosions, and martial arts combat), than you will appreciate this film. If you want to see a film were two artists give you their all, then Day of Days is for you.

The story is deceptively simple. A man, Walter Raymond Leland, has a dream which he interprets as God telling him he will die sometime during the next day. A woman, Marisol Angelica, is sent by an agency to Walter’s house to care for him because his regular carer is ill. Randomness, or fate, or God, brings them together, two strangers, on this day which is significant in each of their lives, Walter because he believes he will die, and Marisol because it is the birthday of her deceased son.

Walter, a WWII veteran, drove a bus for forty years and never missed a day of work. He says to Marisol that he ended up driving around in circles for a living. When we meet him he has been retired and alone for years. He is tired and seemingly ready to die. At times I got the feeling that he saw his life as a prison, yet he never seemed overly bitter. His house is dark. His television broke years ago and he listens to baseball on a broken-down radio. He doesn’t know what an iPad is, and while he has heard of the Internet, he doesn’t understand it. He had lost his wife and son to a stranger shortly after the war when his son was five years old. He has not seen either since. He had written his son a letter years ago but never sent it. He keeps an account of his days in a notebook because, as he says, if you don’t keep an account, the days don’t count, and if the days don’t count, you don’t count.

Marisol, who is studying part-time to be a nurse, enters Walter’s life on what he calls his Judgment Day. It is also the day her dead son would have turned thirteen. Ten years before, she made the passage from Cuba to Florida. Twelve people set out on a small boat and only four survived. Her son drowned. He was three years old. His body was never found. Watching the film, I got the impression that Marisol felt responsible for his death, that she had not had the courage to “hold on,” but instead “let go.” When the boy’s father heard his son had died, he did not follow Marisol to the United States, but stayed in Cuba. Though Marisol lived in Florida and now in California, she never went to the beach.

What takes place on this day in this house between these two people is the human experience down to its roots. They challenge and lift each other. They share a meal. They fight. They confess. They save each other. They hold each other’s hands.

I began this review by saying that the Day of Days is a spiritual film, and it is. However, I wanted to avoid calling it a religious film for fear people would turn away. At times, the dialogue is explicitly religious as it deals with all-too-human joys and sorrows. At the heart of the matter, the film is about how we live and how we love, given the realities that confront us. Those issues are always human, always spiritual, and also religious. It is important to note that the film avoids becoming “preachy.” It does not evangelize a moral or religious position. It does not become self-righteous. Day of Days is simply about two people, one who has faith and one who has lost her faith, encountering each other. It is the encounter that matters.

How Marisol and Walter address this most important day in their lives and where their new-found relationship leads them, are better experienced through watching the film, not in my telling. So, I leave it up to you, but strongly recommend you give Day of Days a chance. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Dale Rominger
The Back Road Café
All views are my own. I received compensation from Aurum Film Group, LLC for this review.