TIFF review: The Climb

The bromance genre gets a fascinating new entry with Michael Angelo Covino’s funny and engaging film

THE CLIMB CWC D: Michael Angelo Covino. U.S. 97 min. Sep 5, 6 pm, Ryerson Sep 6, 3:30 pm, Scotiabank 2. Rating: NNNN

The bromance genre gets a fascinating new entry with Covino’s bold, funny and engaging pic about the codependent, years-long friendship between nice guy Kyle (Kyle Marvin) and trainwreck Michael (Covino).

On the eve of his wedding in the south of France, Kyle learns from best man Michael that the latter has slept with his fiancée. The friendship ends, but gradually Kyle lets Michael back into his life, only to cause more complications.

The sharp and merciless script – written by real-life besties Covino and Marvin – is divided into seven vignettes, each shaped like a satisfying short.

Covino has great control over his material, delivering narrative surprises and impressive long takes and getting subtle, lived-in performances from his cast, which includes Mad Men’s Talia Balsam as Kyle’s mom.

Less successful are a couple of musical interludes that seem intended to put the trivial goings-on of these privileged white people in relief but are distracting and unnecessary.  

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