Now available on VOD (Video on Demand) and on digital, is the dramady (drama/comedy) film, Braking for Whales.
Braking for Whales stars Tammin Sursok (Pretty Little Liars), Tom Felton (Harry Potter franchise), Wendy McLendon-Covey (The Goldbergs), David Koechner (The Goldbergs) and Austin Swift (Live By Night).
Brandon (Felton) and his older sister Star (Sursok) have a very dysfunctional relationship. That dysfunction also extended to their relationship with their mother.
Brandon is engrossed in a “program” that is helping him with his life (I believe Star referred to it as a cult). He’s very rigid and never seems to be happy. He’s so serious.
Star is the opposite of Brandon. She’s a bit “flighty” and wild. She’s all about having fun and partying. She also has a young daughter whom she left with the child’s father, because she doesn’t feel like she’s a good enough mother for her.
Brandon and Star have not seen each other in a while.
The pair are reunited after their mother passes away. They meet up and spend the night at their mother’s home. Their mother was obsessed with whales and her entire home is filled with whale memorabilia, figurines and the like.
Brandon and Star do OK for a bit their first night together, but you can tell there are clearly a lot of issues between them.
The next day they meet up with their mom’s lawyer to learn about her will. They want to quickly get whatever it is that she left for them and be on their way – each going in their own direction.
Their mom bequeathed them everything she had, and that everything was to be divided equally between them. There is only on caveat – they have to take her ashes and put them inside a real whale. She even laid out the exact location where they can find a whale to “feed” her ashes to, which happens to be many states away. Brandon and Star have to do it together, and it has to be done ASAP. If not, everything their mother owned will be giving to a local animal shelter.
Brandon and Star rather not take the road trip together, but it’s the only way they can get what is in their mother’s estate. They both are in need of the money.
Begrudgingly, the brother/sister duo head off with their mother’s ashes (inside a ceramic whale), in their mother’s Winnebago (Brandon didn’t want to put the miles on his leased car. Star did not have a car).
Their adventure doesn’t go as planned. Along the way they meet up with orphaned baby otters, a not-to-kind aunt and uncle (McLendon-Covey and Koechner), as well as airing a lot of issues the pair have with each other, as well as with their mother. They might just realize that they are not so different after all.
Will the pair be able to fulfill their mother’s wishes in time? What will happen to them if/when this is all over? To find out you need to purchase or rent Braking for Whales. Look for it wherever movies are sold and/or rented.
I refer to this film as a dramady because at times you’ll chuckle, and other times you’ll be sucked up into the characters stories and emotions.
The film kept my attention the entire time. I was immediately sucked into the story plot because I wanted to see if the pair were actually able to get their mother’s ashes inside the belly of a whale, consideration how insane that idea is.
I saw a streamed/digital version of the film. I don’t think there are any bonus features available.
There are some sexual situations in this film. There is no nudity, but there are a few references pertaining to “self satisfaction.” There are also some curse words throughout, and references to Brandon’s sexuality.
Overall I enjoyed the film. It does seem a bit outlandish at times (legally I doubt you can feed human remains to a whale, or drive through many states with baby otters), but the silly situations balances out the seriousness very well. I don’t think the film would have been as good if it stuck to being serious the entire time. It needed the silliness peppered throughout the film in order to lighten up the mood of the movie.
Tom Felton (“Brandon”) looks a lot different than he did when he played “Draco” in the Harry Potter franchise. I can’t believe how grown up he is.
Tammin Sursok (“Star”) was perfectly cast. She played off the quirky, flighty older sister very well. It’s as if the role was written with her in mind.
If you would like to check the film out on social media, you can find the film on Instagram and Twitter (@BrakingforWhales) and on Facebook (Whaling the Movie).
Below is the film’s trailer for your enjoyment.
*I received a free screener to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.