David, a struggling comedy writer fresh off from breaking up with his boyfriend, moves from New York City to Sacramento to help his sick mother. Living with his conservative father and much-younger sisters for the first time in ten years, he feels like a stranger in his childhood home. As his mother’s health declines, David frantically tries to extract meaning from this horrible experience and convince everyone (including himself) that he’s “doing okay.”
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Based on Michael Chabon’s novel, the film chronicles the defining summer of a recent college graduate who crosses his gangster father and explores love, sexuality, and the enigmas surrounding his life and his city.
In the waning days of WWI, a U.S. “Mystery Ship,” sets sail for the coast of Spain towing a submarine. Their mission is to find and sink a U-boat that has been especially effective in attacking Allied shipping. Posing as a harmless schooner, the mystery ship is in fact fitted with a formidable gun capable of sinking a U-boat. Stopping in the Canary Islands to refuel, the crew interacts with locals involved with Germans, and with Germans themselves, including the sister of the U-Boat commander, who is lurking offshore waiting for the coming battle.
A young street magician is left to take care of his little sister after his mother’s passing and turns to drug dealing in the Los Angeles party scene to keep a roof over their heads. When he gets into trouble with his supplier, his sister is kidnapped and he is forced to rely on both his sleight of hand and brilliant mind to save her.