A lonely obese boy everyone calls “Butter” is about to make history. He is going to eat himself to death-live on the Internet-and everyone is invited to watch.
Reminiscent of one of my all-time favorite films, Angus (1995), BUTTER is a relatable film about self-worth, being a teenager, and the internet. Marshall, aka Butter, is a musically inclined, obese teen battling bullying, a dismissive father, and an overwhelming feeling of isolation. While posing online as a sports phenom at a private school to catch the eye of his crush, he simultaneously vows to eat himself to death live online on New Year’s Eve. These conflicting plans further complicate his life. The audience gets a front-row seat to an emotional journey of confidence, self-respect, and loneliness, for better or for worse.
Ravi Patel as Butter’s doctor is hilarious. He’s so upbeat you’ll light up each time he appears. He is a solid stellar addition to the cast. Mykelti Williamson is Marshall’s music teacher Professor Dunn. Williamson boosts his confidence by reminding him of his immense talent, never coddling him. He is the dose of reality that guides this young man.
McKaley Miller plays Butter’s crush, Anna. Miller brings a girl next door energy that plays perfectly against Kersting’s Marshall. Mira Sorvino brings a gentleness as concerned and guilt-ridden mother Marian. As a Mom, I recognized the weight in her glance.
Alex Kersting nails it in the titular role. He effortlessly oozes charm and unironic confidence. Kersting is pure joy to watch in this film. I hope we see him in more leading roles because he owns each frame.
BUTTER doesn’t break the mold, but it will strike a chord with every viewer. The most important theme is mental health. The script confronts the darkness head-on, and it doesn’t make excuses. BUTTER also possesses all the fun and angst of classic teen films. It’s filled with heart. Writer-director Paul A. Kaufman has a solid family watch on his hands.
IN THEATERS FEBRUARY 25th
Directed & Written by Paul A. Kaufman
Produced by Paul A. Kaufman, J. Todd Harris, Christina Sibul
Starring Alex Kersting, Mira Sorvino, Mykelti Willliamson, Brian Van Holt, Ravi Patel, Annabeth Gish, McKayley Miller, Jack Griffo, Adain Bradley, Natalie Valerin, Jake Austin Walker, Matthew Gold, Monte Markham and Jessie Rabideau
*Official Winner – Socially Relevant Film Festival 2020*
*World Premiere – Cinequest Film Festival 2020*
*Official Selection – Portland Film Festival 2020*