Qwerty follows the individual and collective adventures of a quirky Chicago couple, Zoe and Marty. Viewers are immediately entranced by the just-silly-enough vibe that is balanced out by some of the deeper hurts that come to the surface as the story unfolds. The oddball love story is endearing with an unusual sense of humor, but a strong one.
Zoe is a woman who still has girlish beliefs in the goodness of life, despite the fact that the world around her doesn’t believe in such innocence. She is obsessed with making sock monkeys, but even more obsessed with words. She aspires to participate in the National Scrabble Competition someday, watching her VHS recordings of past competitions and learning new words that will give her an edge should her dream ever come true. Other than her few friends in the Scrabble Club, no one really supports – or knows about – her dream. That is, until Marty comes along.
To say that the circumstances that brought Marty and Zoe together were unusual is putting it lightly, but the strange set of events eventually blooms into a relationship. Marty, a bit less socially apt than Zoe, is almost forced into this relationship. He likes Zoe, but he’s not really sure how to communicate with him. It is a relationship based off of a mutual awkwardness and understanding of one another, even though Marty is quite different from Zoe. Unlike his girlfriend, Marty struggles with depression, and he is become nearly suicidal by the time they meet.
The two have a mutual dislike for the assimilation of modern society, and the fact that people prioritize money over everything. They mimic them, poking fun at the uppity, stiff ways they tend to conduct themselves in, and through their conversations that usually begin silly and end seriously, they discover that hurt is nothing but a deeply buried anger. Some are better than others at hiding it, and that people who are pushed outside of the common social circles might not have issues; those issues might just be misdirected talents.
The film features lovely shots of the city. There are some over the top moments and characters, but for the most part the film remains balanced. Qwerty really manages to put into perspective the way that people in different economical classes are really alike, and how money can act as a blindfold to different peoples’ similarities. The accompanying soundtrack is adorable, like the movie, but there are many deep parallels that can be drawn from it. It is a light film for the most part, but the strong message about the priorities of life is sure to stick with the viewer.
Qwerty is now available on VOD from FilmBuff.