Paying Mr. McGetty, 2016.
Directed by Michael Baumgarten.
Starring Don “The Dragon” Wilson, R. Marcos Taylor, Anita Clay, Alissa Schneider and Wade Williams.
After a night of drinking and gambling, Tyrell (R. Marcos Taylor) is awakened by an angry call from his girlfriend, Meena (Anita Clay) and finds himself in bed with a strange woman, Cecelia (Alissa Schneider) — a local mob boss’ daughter. Once the local mob boss finds out, he hires Shota (Don Wilson) — a relentless hitman. To make matters worse, the reward on Tyrell’s head has dozens of others looking for him, too. Adding to Tyrell’s troubles, the worst thing of all… Meena, the love of his life, is put in harm’s way. Tyrell must make a stand by taking on the mob, taking on Shota, and finding the money to pay their landlord — Mr. McGetty — before the day ends.
A hearkening back to the early ’90s when quirky action comedies like Destiny Turns on the Radio, The Gun in Betty Lou’s Handbag, and (a personal favorite of mine) Blame it on the Bellboy played in theaters, Paying Mr. McGetty is a sweet little breath of fresh air in our tumultuous climate of global worry and notions of impending doom and gloom. It’s an extremely down to earth riff on mistaken identity and comedic chaos, with a protagonist who wakes up one morning and has no idea how he got there or who the woman sleeping next to him is. This guy is the good-hearted but gambling addicted Tyrell (R. Marcus Taylor who did a three-episode stint on Netflix’s Luke Cage and makes his bread as a stuntman), and the woman sleeping next to him is the fiancée of a local crime lord named Rocco (Wade Williams). Tyrell sort of stumbles out of the hotel room in shock, thinking how he’s going to explain his behavior to his girlfriend (played by Anita Clay), but when a photograph is taken of Tyrell and Rocco’s fiancée together, Tyrell’s day takes a turn for the worse as Rocco puts a hit out on him. The assassin who takes the call is the soft-spoken but untouchable Shota Kabu (Don “The Dragon” Wilson), and it doesn’t take long for Shota to find him. Add to the mix a whole other element on Tyrell’s tail (Rocco and his thugs go after him too), and Tyrell – who’s basically just trying to get home in one piece – must reclaim his childhood passion for the martial arts to recover some semblance of sanity to a day that has become the most insane day of his life!
Paying Mr. McGetty is quite unlike any other film currently on the market. It’s a zany, mostly family-friendly effort that has several selling points. Anything with Don “The Dragon” Wilson is worth watching at least once, and here he provides most of the close-quarters and hard-hitting action. As Wilson has matured in looks and appears more seasoned, so too have his acting abilities gotten more interesting. He’s not necessarily the “star” of the film, but he’s magnetic when he’s on screen, and he’s easily the best reason to watch the movie. R. Marcus Taylor, who’s an actor mostly unfamiliar to me, provides an empathetic performance worthy of being the center of attention in the picture. He plays an “everyman” character pretty well, and he never once overdoes it with silly humor or misdirection. The director and co-writer of the film is Michael Baumgarten, whose previous film The Martial Arts Kid was a small triumph of a family action film. Here he’s experimenting with storytelling, and he’s taken a risk by taking on a movie that’s not easy to classify. Once upon a time not so long ago, Paying Mr. McGetty would have played nicely on a few hundred screens across North America and would have had a decent run at the box office and then gone to home video where it would have garnered a cult following. It does things that not many movies even dare to try anymore, and that’s to be different and unique, and hey, it’s kind of entertaining as a result. It’s funny at times, it has some decent action, and it has a sweet heart with a nice ending. While that might sound old-fashioned these days, I’d say that it’s pretty cool to know that families and fans of Don “The Dragon” Wilson still have someplace to go to see a movie that will appeal to them. Good job, guys. Keep up the good work.
Paying Mr. McGetty will be released in 2017.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ ★ ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★ ★
david j. moore