Mercy is an IFC produced film that stars Scott Caan as a jaded writer who gets a harsh reality check when he meets a mysterious woman. This movie could easily be an indie drama that sucks the life and joy out of its viewers for an hour and a half but it doesn’t. It’s a lot lighter than expected and entertains on every level.

The Players:

  • Director: Patrick Hoelck
  • Writers: Scott Caan
  • Cast: Scott Caan, Wendy Glenn, Troy Garity, John Boyd, James Caan, Dylan McDermott, Erika Christensen
  • Cinematographer: Phil Parmet
  • Original Music: Mader

The Plot:

Gerry Ryan is a young, successful romance novelist who doesn’t believe in the concept of love but makes millions off the fantasy. He’s not interested in forming legitimate relationships and has serious commitment issues. His emotional barrier is broken down when he meets a strong willed critic named Mercy who not only changes his view of women but also his view on love.

The Good:

  • The Cast: Everyone involved in this film brought their A-game to their roles. Scott Caan showed great emotional range and Dylan McDermott’s sleazy portrayal of his literary agent could give “Entourage’s“‘ Ari Gold a run for his money. The characters were interesting and entertaining to watch from beginning to end.
  • Screenplay: Caan wrote the screenplay with a non-linear narrative and in some cases that could be confusing but here it was worked perfectly. Also the way he wrote the characters was very natural. The dialogue was witty but not over the top and the emotional scenes were dramatic but not heavy handed. The overall script had a steady balance.
  • The Editing: Because the story doesn’t take place in real time, the right editing is crucial. A lot of the transitions between specific time frames were done in non-jarring way. The viewer is able to process and understand the characters movement from point A to point B without getting lost.

The Bad:

  • More James Caan Please: Caan played Ryan’s emotionally inept father who passed down his women hating ways to his son. It would have been great to see more of his background to understand what made him so cold and disconnected. It was briefly addressed in the film but nothing in depth.


Going into Mercy, I was under the impression that it would be a melodrama about a yuppie guy who gets turned out by love and it was nothing like that. There was drama but it was balanced by a few well placed comedic moments. The characters by far were the best part of the film. They’re portrayed as real people dealing with unfortunate events. There’s nothing outlandish or Hollywood about this movie and that was refreshing a change.

Rating: 9/10

Mercy opens May 7th at the Laemmle Sunset 5 in Los Angeles and is available nationwide on video on demand.



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Are you interested in seeing Mercy this weekend?