It kind of feels like all of us have been trapped in Long Weekend. Which helps to make the new indie romantic escape from writer-director Stephen Basilone so welcome at a time like now. So much of our entertainment consumption has been about bingeworthy TV shows and blockbusters that were supposed to come to theaters but now appear in our living rooms. We miss the modest-budgeted, character-driven and high-concept stories, the ones you’d discover at a film festival and spend weeks raving to your friends about it.
Long Weekend is that kind of movie, though it has secrets that we need to guard with our lives. We can sing about chemistry found in its leads, Finn Wittrock and Zoe Chao. He plays a man getting over a vicious breakup, and she… well, she comes around at just the right time. Part of their courtship involves an original song that Chao’s character, Vienna, has to perform on the fly, to prove something to Wittrock’s character, Bart. So when I spoke with the two about their movie, I brought up the song, and her story is in the clip above.
One of the most captivating parts of the scene involving the song for Long Weekend is that Zoe Chao sells the music so beautifully. She has a wonderful singing voice, and she’s correct in saying that they have stripped down the tune -- originally penned by Lauren Culjak -- so that she could deliver it to Finn Wittrock’s character. So it really caught me off guard to hear the actress admit that she has no musical ability.
As Zoe Chao said about her on-screen musical moment in Long Weekend:
She wrote this song for the movie. I don’t play guitar, but she’s such an amazing musician that she stripped it down so I could learn three chords and just strum one string. And it’s such a beautiful song, and I remember singing it a lot, wherever I was, trying to get it in me.
Why is this song so important to Zoe Chao’s character at this moment in the movie? Well, that becomes harder to explain. There is a hook in Long Weekend that propel the relationship forward, and even telling you to look out for the “hook” annoys me, because I’d rather that you go into the film blind and just get caught up in the story of this couple. It’s enough to hold you, and then the hook will hit and take you in new directions. But the song triggers it, so hold on tight.