“Grandma said that I defy clinical categorization, I am just as special as anyone else, maybe even a little bit more,” explains Luke (Lou Taylor Pucci) about his autism. That explanation may even be the best way to describe The Story of Luke (directed by Alonso Mayo) as a film.
Pucci plays Luke, an autistic young man who moves in with his Aunt and Uncle (played by Kristin Bauer and Cary Elwes) after the death of his grandmother and the moving of his grandfather to a nursing home. A semi-coherent conversation with his grandfather pushes him down a singular path, “Get a job. Find a girl. Live your own life. Be a man!”
Seth Green also appears as Luke’s job supervisor, Zack (“never Zachary”), an angry but brilliant computer technician at “Click & Easy”. While we’ve seen Green in the “angry but brilliant” role before, I don’t think we’ve ever seen him like this.
“Keep an eye on the relatives,” Luke’s grandfather tells him, but he does so much more than that. Luke seems to have a natural ability to help people. While most of the comedy is derived by Luke’s lack of understanding in certain social situations, the film never stoops to picking on the mentally disabled. In fact, sometimes Luke seems to understand more than the rest of the characters give him credit for.
The performances from the entire cast were stellar. We think that we will see Luke’s evolution from dependent to independent, but from the beginning, Luke has immense potential for self-sufficiency and the film is more trying to get the rest of the cast to see what we as an audience see.
Bauer originally looks one dimensional as an actress in this role. While her filmography is extensive, I only know her from the “bitchy vampire” role of Pam from the HBO series True Blood. Her performance in this film, however, showed me that she has a great deal to offer and that audiences that only know the previously mentioned role should know he has a greater deal of range.
The Story of Luke is available for rental and purchase on iTunes. For more information on screenings, or to request a screening locally, visit www.thestoryofluke.com.
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