Anthony Fauchetti (David Graziano) is no stranger to the business.
You can just look at him and tell that life has worn him down, memories of the girl (Audrey Noone) he couldn't get are a constant and alcohol masks the memories of past choices and something not quite close to regret.
Anthony made his choices. He's living with them.
When Vincent (Kris Salvi) knocks on his door, the alcohol-fogged Anthony instinctively grabs for his nearby and ever-ready pistol. He doesn't seem to want to use it, but instinctively he's always ready.
Anthony has put that life behind him. But, there's always one more job that needs to be done.
He made an oath. Is Anthony a man of his word?
Director Christopher is no stranger to this kind of world, this script penned by Salvi feels like familiar territory yet Graziano makes Anthony his own. This mafia-tinged tale isn't really an action flick as much as it is a look inside whatever soul is left of Anthony and his desire for a little bit of peace before his life winds down. He's lost somewhere between memories and a hallucinogenic glaze.
Something's real. He's not sure what.
This is the kind of role that Graziano could do in his sleep, but Graziano never sleeps through a role. He owns it with every fiber of his being. Exeter at Midnight is his film. Kris Salvi and Audrey Noone are here and they do their usual fine work, but Graziano is front-and-center and in this story that's the way it should be.
Di Nunzio's lensing is fine, again as always, though it's almost a little too pristine for a story this grizzled and gritty. Amanda Faughn's editing allows us to linger on Anthony in a way that immerses us inside his fractured psyche'. We don't so much understand him, because most of us have never lived inside his world.
But, we're there. We're with him in some sort of weird way.
Exeter at Midnight was only recently completed and here's hoping the indie fest scene revives itself, virtually or otherwise, so that a wider audience can check out the work of Di Nunzio and his team on yet another fine project that explores a real person from a seemingly unreal world. For those who gravitate toward these types of mob-tinged, mafioso type stories this will be a rewarding 13-minute view with a tremendous performance from the always dependable David Graziano. Check it out if you get a chance.
Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic