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Review: Riffing on addiction, 'Morning, Noon & Night' offers little insight

Review: Riffing on addiction, 'Morning, Noon & Night' offers little insight
Carly Schneider in the movie "Morning, Noon & Night." (Panoramic Pictures)

A drunk, a cokehead, a pothead and two junkies walk into a beer fest … and you have Josh Becker’s “Morning, Noon & Night,” a meandering, pointless and boring rumination on substances and those who love to abuse them.

The loose story follows an interconnected group of characters throughout a single day as they they pick their poison, and then talk, talk and talk in faux-edgy monologues. John Manfredi stars as Cliff, a hard-charging sales executive with a cocaine habit so voracious his drug dealers stage an intervention (they’re worried about losing their best customer).

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He’s the father of Kelly (Carly Schneider), a slacker college student who decides to ditch class and dabble in heroin with her best friend. Her history professor, Aaron (Frank Ondorf), an alcoholic, rants in disgust at his class of millennials about their “safe spaces” and lack of knowledge about the “real world.”

The stories wander from place to place, as each character gets a chance to opine, philosophize or justify their vices. But it’s self-indulgent and lazily offensive, invoking racial stereotypes and snarky jokes about transgender people rather than anything of actual insight. The quintet, plus Aaron’s weed-smoking neighbor Nikki (Anne Alexander Sieder) gather at a beer fest and indulge in a bizarre celebration of their bad choices. More like boor fest.

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‘Morning, Noon & Night’

Not rated

Running time: 1 hour, 41 minutes

Playing: Starts Oct. 5, Laemmle Music Hall, Beverly Hills

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