Melissa B. Miller Constanzo’s All These Small Moments perfectly captures those seminal moments which shape our lives. It’s hard even to fathom how this was Constanzo’s first feature film. The first time writer and director exhibited such skill in not only the pacing of the release but in how the narrative was crafted. While this film gained some traction during the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival, it has relatively remained under the radar. With the film’s upcoming release, that’ about to change.
The film initially focuses on Howie Sheffield’s (Brendan Meyer) infatuation with a blonde haired older woman on his bus who we later know as Odessa (Jemima Kirke). His lust for the former Girls star impacts many members of his family. Simon (Sam Mccarthy) is continuously trying to get Howie to hang with kids his age. His parents Carla and Tom (Molly Ringwald and Brian D’Arcy James) are worried about their eldest child but are dealing with severe marital issues. While any one of these moments could have come across as contrived, All These Small Moments doesn’t seem to strike a false note.
One of my favorite moments in the film came from Lindsay (played by Kevin Smith’s highly talented daughter, Harley Quinn Smith). Her character meets up with Howie in the library (as both of them are out of PE for different reasons). Even in the midst of her angst, a blind person could see the connection she had with elder Sheffield boy. Her performance perfectly that unsure feeling that all of us had growing up just as that boy or girl got closer. However, Howie is too blinded by his obsession even to notice her. Odessa is everything to him. Little does he realize that her world is collapsing on her as well. Also as their eldest is going through this inner struggle, Carla and Tom are trying to remember why it is they got together, to begin with.
All These Small Moments beautifully captures our need to focus on those instances which shape who we are. Sometimes it’s as simple as showing kindness that could lead to endless possibilities. Constanzo’s film perfectly demonstrates that.