In the vein of many indie films before it, Christopher Schaap's Prom King, 2010 is a story of longing which juxtaposes the enormity of New York City and all of its promise, with the intimacy and singularity of companionship, following the exploits of Charlie, a 20-year-old college student who is having a hard time adjusting to the harsh realities of modern dating. Featuring a main protagonist who is a sensitive young man with romantic ideals that simply don't congeal with the modernity of online dating and the increasingly detached reality that sees human-to-human interaction dwindling, Prom King 2010 effectively evokes the general malaise which manifests itself between youthful experimentation and love/companionship seeking, capturing the slow crawling existential fear of being alone that many of us often feel at some time in our life, when the struggle to find that 'special someone' continually goes from promise to pain. Prom King, 2010 balances its comedic assertions and introspective nature well, becoming a film that encapsulates the overall mood of this time in a young person's life, being a story brimming with idyllic possibility that is part hopeful while also tragic, with Prom King doing a great job at eliciting the ups and downs associated with one's quest to find this thing we call love. Charile, our main protagonist, is sensitive, yet genuine, a character who is easy to root for due to his sexual innocence, with his naivety routinely providing a lot of comedic moments. Prom King is charming and sensitive, yet honest, but perhaps its greatest strength is its ability to capture the toxic effects trying to define love can have on the psyche. Charlie is a character who has a very romanticized version of what love and companionship is, and what it isn't, a mindset which routinely leads to self-deprecation and negativity when things don't develop the way his romanticized perspective expected. His general struggles to find someone leave him frustrated, at times even lashing out at himself for being gay, fixating on anything to blame but himself. It's through these frustrations that Prom King, 2010 also captures how universal this type of emotional strife is, detailing how sexual orientation is a mere detail when it comes to general sense of longing we all feel as individuals in our search for love and companionship. Keeping microbudget restrictions in mind, Prom King 2010 is well made showing a sense for ingenuity and craft, with Christopher Schaap's direction being subtle, yet assured, constructing an atmosphere around this protagonist that feels lively and sweeping with romance, effectively evoking the feelings of seclusion many single individuals feel when surrounded by others who are in a relationship. While the film does begin to lag towards the end, with the abundance of peaks and valleys in Christopher's love life reaching a breaking point on the viewers patience, Prom King 2010 is an assured indie effort by writer/director/actor Christopher Shaap, a personal story which touches on a lot of universal truths about dating, longing, and love.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.