LA Film Fest 2018: The Wrong Todd

The Wrong Todd. Courtesy of Wrong Productions.

Blending together sci-fi, comedy, and drama, The Wrong Todd has quite the absurd delivery in seeking to understand what truly matters.

Todd (Jesse Rosen) lives in Providence with his girlfriend, Lucy (Anna Rizzo).  When she’s offered a job in Seattle, Todd is hesitant to change up his entire life.  He’s not entirely pleased at moving 3,000 miles away or even a long-distance relationship.  Obviously, Lucy would like Todd to see where she’s coming from but he’s not about to budge anytime soon.  This is where writer-director Rob Schulbaum tries to get our characters to open up to change in one way or another.  Lucy soon gets more than she bargained for.

While the two of them are fighting, a Todd from a parallel universe decides to take his place.  This other Todd sends this planet’s Todd to his universe.  It’s not exactly the same universe.  That this parallel universe features a Lucy who died some two years ago does provide some insight to this other Todd.  Can our Todd live without his Lucy if he can’t get back home?  The other Todd can’t seem to let go.

It’s amazing to see how these two universes differ.  Dave (Sean Carmichael) can be a drunken idiot in one universe and yet be so intelligent in other.  Could the Dave in this universe reach the same potential and find love, too?  While this is one of the questions among others that I had from viewing the film, it ends before we can get that particular question answered.

Adapting his own short film into a feature film, Family Guy veteran Rob Schulbaum has given us a script that isn’t quite so heavy on the sci-fi aspect. While yes, there is some some sci-fi mixed into the film, it’s not as major as one is led to believe.  It’s a plot device, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not as major as the drama at hand.  The aforementioned drama is what leads to the comedy at hand.  The comedy–of course–comes from Todd’s friends realizing that there’s more than one Todd.

Jesse Rosen is very convincing as both Todd and Other Todd.   You almost forget that it’s the same actor playing both parts.  He’s not alone in the dual roles.  Both Sean Carmichael and Erin Rose play Other Dave and Other Abby, respectively.  Carmichael pulls off the drunk asshole and mature husband quite well.

Schulbaum’s film is representative of his own story so to speak.  He had a great job working on Family Guy in Los Angeles but moved to Rhode Island a few years ago.  This provides some explanation for the Rhode Island setting.  He could have easily made a film set in LA but Rhode Island is a nice change from traditional NY or LA settings.

Lightly touching on sci-fi themes, the biggest message of The Wrong Todd is that we must learn to change.

DIRECTOR/SCREENWRITER:  Rob Schulbaum
CAST:  Jesse Rosen, Anna Rizzo, Sean Carmichael, Derek K. Moore, Erin Rose

The Wrong Todd held its world premiere during the 2018 LA Film Festival in the US Fiction program.

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.

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