2022 SLAMDANCE FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW!
Imperfect follows the Phamaly Theatre Company as it works toward preparing a production of the popular musical Chicago. What is unique about Phamaly is that it only employs individuals with disabilities. Each person working hard to make this play a reality faces a struggle, whether it’s physical or something else entirely. This one-of-a-kind theatre company is inspirational, and the stories of everyone involved will get you on your feet, cheering, full of life.
The obvious is the message and that Imperfect is inspirational. As it walks viewers through the struggles of the entirety of the group at Phamaly Theatre Company the world realizes that their lives maybe aren’t so difficult. There is a part of this film that is dedicated to inspiring others, and it does just that. If you’re human and have any semblance of a heart, there is no way that you walk away from Imperfect without feeling that all-important inspiration. Directors Brian Malone and Regan Linton know how to reach their viewers, and the story that they present to the world is unique–but incredibly relevant.
I believed, coming into the film, that due to its content–the development of a musical–I would struggle to connect with what was being done. However, the cast and crew does such a wonderful job of capturing the honesty and the nuances of everyone and everything involved in the production of the film. Viewers will likely see the subjects of the film and focus heavily on their disabilities, but that’s not the point of what Malone and Linton are trying to say. The two directors do a wonderful job of both incorporating the reality of each and every person into the documentary, while focusing on them as people rather than some anomaly that exists in the world of theater. Imperfect pulls even the biggest skeptics of musical theater (i.e. me) into this film as it focuses so strongly on the ingenuity of man and what a role passion and vigor play in our day-to-day lives.
The content present throughout Imperfect feels genuine and honest. I could feel the passion and hardship emanating out of the screen, filling the room in which I sat watching this captivating documentary. The slew of actors present in Imperfect just want their stories to be heard, and they want to be appreciated for what they are good at–acting. Their hopes and dreams are reflected brilliantly throughout the film, and viewers have no choice but to fall in love not just with the Phamaly Theatre Company as a whole, but each individual actor as well.
As Imperfect ends on a dark, immensely heavy note, viewers are subjected to the harsh realities of life–but there is one more lesson to be learned. No matter how rocky the road, how difficult the journey, life is good–be thankful for what you have. Imperfect, at its roots, is about inspiring the world and reminding them that they often have more than they give themselves credit for, and that’s a difficult task in the world in which we currently live. Imperfect, and all who bring it to life, is successful on its journey toward making the world a better place, inspiring others, and showcasing the abilities (on and off stage) of each of the actors present in the film.
Directed by Brian Malone & Regan Linton.
Starring Megan McGuire, Erin Schneider, Leonard Barrett Jr., Laurice, Quinn, Bri Bader, Amber Marsh, Jacob Elledge, Lucy Roucis, Phillip Lomeo, Adam Johnson, Griffin McConnell, Kathleen Traylor, Kevin Pettit, Kirsten Lang, Linda Wirth, Maggie Whittum, Miranda Ireland, Robert Micahel Sanders, Sam Barrasso, Shannon Sauer, Toby Yount, Trenton Schindele, Lisa Gough, Mark Dissette, etc.