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Credulity hits low note in 'The Singing Forest'

June 25, 2004|Kevin Thomas | Times Staff Writer

Jorge Ameer's "The Singing Forest," a mawkish, amateurish drama about reincarnation, is unlikely to win converts. Awkwardly staged and edited and fitted out with an overly intrusive score drawn primarily from classical music, the film consistently subverts the earnest efforts of its cast.

A middle-aged, widowed writer, Christopher (Jon Sherrin), has long been haunted, even before the birth of his daughter, Destiny (Erin Leigh Price), by the belief that in an earlier life he was a gay German who with his lover became victims of the Holocaust. Destiny, who he has not seen since her college days, has now informed him of her upcoming marriage.

Father and daughter are happily reunited but, by golly, no sooner does Christopher meet his soon-to-be son-in-law, Ben (Craig Pinskton), than he senses that Ben is the reincarnation of the gay German's lover. If this sounds like a stretch, it's only the beginning.

If nothing else can be said of "The Singing Forest," it is assuredly fearless in defying credibility at every turn and on every level.

*

'The Singing Forest'

MPAA rating: Unrated

Times guidelines: Adult themes, some sensuality

Jon Sherrin...Christopher

Craig Pinkston...Ben

Erin Leigh Price...Destiny

Toni Zobel...Psychic

A Hollywood Independents presentation. Writer-producer-director Jorge Ameer. Cinematographer Gary Tachell. Editors L. Black, Lawrence Benedict, Kristen Reed, Michelle Clay. Art director Rebae Plant. Running time: 1 hour, 12 minutes.

Exclusively at the Sunset 5, 8000 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, (323) 848-3500.

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