Review of “2 Minutes Later”


It’s in a genre all its own — the lesbian/gay buddy movie gone sexed-up noir thriller — and it has a mystery at its heart. Add lots of girl-on-girl kissing and our dyke detective running around in high heels and a tight dress with a gun, and you’ve got 2 Minutes Later, a film by Robert Gaston (OpenCam), currently making the rounds on the LGBT film festival circuit.

Bisexual actress Jessica Graham plays chic lesbian private eye Abigail Marks, a hard-drinking party girl by night who seeks out missing persons and repos cars by, well … night. She doesn’t appear to get out much during the day. She flirts with guys to get information and access ("Whatever happened to flannel shirts and mullets?" squeaks one young cop she presses for information). And she drags willing women into out-of-the-way spots like bathrooms for quickies.

When shy, semi-closeted insurance investigator Michael Dalmar (Michael Molina) is in Philadelphia on business, he tries to connect with his twin brother Kyle (also played by Molina), whom he hasn’t seen in 10 years. The two have a strained and competitive relationship, with the "two minutes older" Kyle coming out on top in the sexual and professional stakes. A successful photographer, Kyle is also an arrogant prick with more enemies than friends. Kyle, however, is missing: No one has seen him in a couple of weeks.

Michael is accidentally mistaken for his twin, and without any apparent hesitation, simply slips into his life, clothes and relationship with cute assistant-with-privileges Joey (J. Matthew Miller). Michael wanders around the city trying to figure out what happened to Kyle by asking leading questions of everyone who recognizes him, without telling them who he really is. He meets guys dumped by Kyle, models offended by Kyle, and Emily (Ben Sander), a neighbor who seems quite ready to spit on Kyle.

Enter the sleekly-coiffed Abigail, hired by Kyle’s agent, Kate, to track down her missing client. She’s not so sleek, however, the first time we meet her; she’s hung over and trying to get rid of the woman who stayed over the night before when she gets a call from Kate, who purrs, "Are you still my sexy girl?" into the phone.

Abigail is definitely still a sexy girl, flopping down on her bed in a tank and green panties to take the call. She’s also a tough one, brushing off Kate’s request for a discount on her $500-a-day rate with a terse, "I’m hanging up."

"You’ve got the job," Kate blurts out.

Abigail shows up in a tight, sleeveless white dress and heels at an art opening that night, and spots the man everyone thinks is Kyle being accosted by a model his brother had humiliated during a photo shoot. She comes to his rescue, and they’re both thrown out of the party.

Although Michael tries in his low-key way to fool her just like he’s fooled everyone else, she figures out it’s not him in about 10 seconds. Then the two of them turn into the queer Hepburn and Tracy, exchanging witty, abusive banter at the speed of light while they try to find out what happened to Kyle and not get killed in the process. They have an easy chemistry, and between Abigail’s slutty, rule-breaking methods and Michael’s more prosaic investigational skills, they make the perfect team.

Graham couldn’t be more perfect in the role, since there aren’t a lot of actresses who could run down the street in high heels and a tight white dress, pull a gun out of her clutch purse, climb a cyclone fence, and never for one moment look ridiculous or anything less than competent, sexy and deadly. She’s never at a loss, whether covering Michael’s back in a shootout or coming up with a seamless lie while questioning Kyle’s acquaintances about his movements prior to his disappearance.

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