Review – Touch
Director/Writer: Minh Duc Nguyen Language: English, Vietnamese with English subtitles
Everyone wants to be touched, to have someone in their life who reaches out to them, to hold them, to bond and connect with them. Brendan (John Ruby), a good-looking grease-monkey, is no different. But because his vocation as a mechanic drives dirt and grime deep into his hands and under his fingernails, his career-minded trophy wife doesn’t want, nor need his intimacy. Still, he loves her and is at a loss for what to do.
That is, until he braves a wave of estrogen-based ridicule and walks into a nail salon. There he meets Tam (Porter Lynn), a shy, talented manicurist, who gently returns his hands to up-close-and personal acceptability. Sadly, Tam is also broken and brittle and needs someone special in her life as well. Unfortunately, by bringing Brendan back to the opening arms of his wife, Tam is also brought closer to Brendan.
“Touch” is a pleasant feature, and belies the nature of an indie film, being presented on quality ‘celluloid.’ The clarity and beauty on screen suggests a much higher budget.
“Touch” comes with some slow, cerebral spots; spots of gentle poignancy; and places of humor, such as when the nail gals start chatting candidly and openly (in Vietnamese) in front of customers, everyone seemingly a target of gossip.
Put all together, “Touch” worked rather nicely.