LA Film Festival 2018: We The Coyotes

Morgan Saylor and McCaul Lombardi in We The Coyotes.

We The Coyotes dives in head first as a pair of young adults move from the comforts of the midwest for life in Los Angeles.

The film starts as Amanda (Morgan Saylor) and Jake (McCaul Lombardi) set out to restart their life in Los Angeles.  It’s not long before we see why Amanda’s family doesn’t like Jake.  He comes off as such as slacker.

We follow Amanda and Jake over their first 24 hours in LA.  For moving to such a big city, they really didn’t plan their move.  The only sure thing is that Amanda has a job interview because staying at her aunt’s isn’t a guarantee.  Aside from that, anything that can go wrong will almost always go wrong.

While the film is billed as a drama, there are some for-sure comedic moments.  These moments almost write themselves because honestly, I wasn’t surprised to see it take place as they did.  One such moment, involving their car, was not a surprise given how much of a slacker vibe I got from watching Jake on screen.  Another thing to ask is how can Jake not own a cell phone in 2018?  When handing off his resume to Jennifer (Vivian Bang) at the bookstore, he gives her Amanda’s number instead of his own.

Best known for playing Dana Brody on Homeland, Morgan Saylor plays a much different role.  She doesn’t play the character with the angst that led viewers to hate her on Homeland.  There is a case of art-imitates-life as the Chicago native moved to LA shortly before production began on the film.  For what it’s worth, Saylor has quite the chemistry with McCaul Lombardi.  It translates quite well on screen.

Where these the same things that happened in writer-directors Hanna Ladoul and Marco La Via’s lives when they arrived in LA?  I don’t know.

Ultimately, We the Coyotes comes off as the type of indie film that isn’t for everyone.  I can only speak for myself but as a viewer, I found myself struggling to connect much less relate to the film but that’s just me.  Maybe this is because I am a person who trends to plan better when moving than the lead characters.  I mean, I’ve moved without a job in place similar to Amanda but I at least had somewhat of a plan put together.  Amanda and Jake don’t even seem to have this when they move.

DIRECTORS/SCREENWRITERS:  Hanna Ladoul and Marco La Via
CAST:  Morgan Saylor, McCaul Lombardi, Khleo Thomas, Lorelei Linklater, Cameron Crovetti , Nicholas Crovetti, Vivian Bang, Ravil Isyanov, and Betsy Brandt

We The Coyotes held its North American premiere at the 2018 LA Film Festival in the LA Muse 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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