Maggie (Dianna Agron) arrives at a small, run-down house in the middle of nowhere to find it defaced by big orange letters reading ACIDMAN and learns that this is the locals’ nickname for her reclusive father (Thomas Haden Church). After a decade apart, Maggie’s offhand explanation for her visit is that she just wanted to check in on him, but this doesn’t ring true considering how difficult he was to find. The two awkwardly want to get to know one another (Dad seems more comfortable talking through his dog Migo, or through Bobby, Maggie’s childhood sock puppet friend), but are at the same time scared about what increasing familiarity will bring. After Dad reluctantly brings her on one of his nighttime outings, Maggie realizes that his obsession with UFOs and communicating with extraterrestrial beings has only intensified over the years. She struggles to understand him, his single-mindedness and deteriorating mental health, all the while with her own life-changing news to share. Letting their relationship ebb and flow through anger, silly jokes, tender gestures, and sadness, ACIDMAN is a beautiful meditation on the cyclical nature of parenthood and the longing for connection. Director Alex Lehman (Asperger’s Are Us, Paddleton, Blue Jay) drops by to talk about his follow up to Blue Jay, how working with gifted actors Dianna Agron and Thomas Haden Church opened up the filmmaking into a more creative and character driven story.
About the filmmaker – Alex Lehmann is the writer, director, and producer of “Acidman” starring Dianna Agron and Thomas Haden Church. He also directed the highly anticipated Black List feature, “Meet Cute,” produced by Weed Road, and starring Pete Davidson and Kaley Cuoco. A narrative and documentary filmmaker, Lehmann’s films include Netflix’s dramatic comedies “Paddleton,” starring Mark Duplass and Ray Romano, which premiered at Sundance in 2019, and “Blue Jay,” his narrative feature debut, starring Sarah Paulson and Mark Duplass. It premiered at TIFF in 2016 to critical acclaim. His HBO docu-series, On Tour with Asperger’s Are Us is an extrapolation of his original feature doc Asperger’s Are Us. Lehmann’s work explores the themes of selfless love, friendship, and how a little vulnerability can connect us all. He lives in Los Angeles.
“This film is what would remain if you deleted all the spaceships from “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”: the tale of a once ordinary man beset by an unworldly thirst that he can neither explain nor quench.” –The New Yorker
“This resonant, resourceful indie drama leaves a gentle imprint on audiences’ souls.” –Variety
“A tender, heartfelt and captivating emotional journey.” – Avi Offer, NYC Movie Guru
“[Dianna] Agron is particularly stellar as a daughter torn between wanting to accept her father’s deterioration yet desperate to mend him at the same time.”
– Peter Gray, AU Review