I’ve Got Issues

I’ve Got Issues

2020, NR, 88 min. Directed by Steve Collins. Starring Macon Blair, Claire Titelman, Maria Thayer, Jim Gaffigan, John Merriman, Randy E. Aguebor, Byron Brown, Courtney Davis, Sam Eidson, Paul Gordon.

REVIEWED By Marc Savlov, Fri., Sept. 18, 2020

This Austin-based, absurdist comedy of the daily frustrations we all face, premiered at the 2019 Austin Film Festival, mere months before the onslaught of yet more bad news for humanity. We’ve all got issues. The questions at the strangely hopeful heart of Collins’ film are “What do we do with the hurt?” and “How do [we] heal?”

It's set up as a series of individually titled short vignettes revolving around the daily grind of contemporary life gone incrementally haywire. The actors turn up in multiple parts, among them Merriman, who seeks counseling from a dubious “healer” (Gordon) while others are shown in brief, blackout sketch-scenes grappling with inane job interviews, broken high heels, fractured fairy tale love lives gone goofily but affectingly awry, and the eternal battle to wrest from that iconic, goddam soda machine the carbonated gift that will (hopefully) satisfy not only the physical thirst but also some sort of higher if minor spiritual triumph.

Collins, who also wrote this woeful, dolefully humorous take on mankind’s endless struggle to overcome the banal but no-less soul-sucking minor mishaps of modern life, ends things on a surprisingly encouraging, optimistic note, narrated by Gaffigan: “Take care my suffering ones. Take care of the tender hearted. Help each other through the storm. It is not all darkness, and you are not alone.” A message from the universal spirit, perhaps, and most certainly one that carries even more meaningful weight right now than director Collins could’ve ever suspected way back in the before-times.

I've Got Issues is available on VOD now. For an interview with writer/director Steve Collins, read "Adrift on a Ship of Fools," Sept. 18.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Steve Collins Films
Steve's 4pm Fun Festival
...

May 5, 2021

Gretchen
...

May 5, 2021

More by Marc Savlov
The Outside Story
After a year trapped inside, a welcome comedic reminder of life in fresh air

April 30, 2021

Vanquish
Wooden Wick knock-off wastes Ruby Rose's star power

April 16, 2021

KEYWORDS FOR THIS FILM

I’ve Got Issues, Steve Collins, Macon Blair, Claire Titelman, Maria Thayer, Jim Gaffigan, John Merriman, Randy E. Aguebor, Byron Brown, Courtney Davis, Sam Eidson, Paul Gordon

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle