Thursday May 3rd - 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM
The AMC Theatre at 21C
CHANGE IN THE AIR opens in a modest home on a quiet street. An old man, Walter Lemke (M. Emmet Walsh), skips the breakfast his wife, Margaret (Olympia Dukakis) is preparing in order to step in front of an oncoming car. Moody Burkhart (Aidan Quinn), the police officer who responds to the accident, inquires about the woman, Wren Miller (Rachel Brosnahan), who placed the emergency call. Apparently, she’s new to the neighborhood. But when Moody knocks on Wren’s door, she hides.
The following day, Jo Ann & Arnie Bayberry (Mary Beth Hurt and Peter Gerety) return from a bird-watching expedition. Their next-door neighbor, Donna (Macy Gray), a music teacher, comes out to greet them. She tells them about Mr. Lemke’s attempted suicide and shares that she has found a young lady, Wren, to sublet her apartment. When the Lemkes come home from the hospital, Jo Ann spies Walter sitting alone in his front yard and, deciding to keep an eye on him, drags her lawn chair down the street and sets up beside him – invading his space with the best of intentions. Walter never says a word; Jo Ann never stops talking.
Meanwhile, Josh (Satya Bhabha), the local mailman, delivers a large bag to Wren’s door. While he catches up with Jo Ann on the Lemke lawn, Wren walks by carrying a canvas tote filled with paper scrolls. Jo Ann rushes over to introduce herself and can’t resist peering into the bag. She asks Wren where she’s going and what she’s carrying, but Wren will not say.
In the days that follow, the vigil on the Lemke lawn expands along with Jo Ann’s fascination with Wren, whose apartment lights burn deep into the night, who receives a sack of mail every day, and who walks – somewhere – each afternoon with a bounty of scrolls. But now it’s not just Jo Ann who is intrigued. When Wren first encounters Arnie he is staring at a photograph of a pygmy falcon he doesn’t remember taking. To his surprise, Wren identifies the bird. Then Moody is informed that the 911 call was placed before Walter’s accident happened.
While Jo Ann is busy trying to figure out her new neighbor, we learn that she has troubles of her own, though her secret relationship to bourbon is no secret to her husband. Mrs. Lemke, agonizingly aware that her husband is ready to leave this life, is also deeply understanding of his desire. Both couples know what love is and are true to their vow to stay together come what may. Both negotiate obstacles built up over a lifetime, troubles that haunt them inside their suburban paradise. But Wren’s beauty and inscrutable behavior cause a stir and as the story unfolds, patterns and boundaries are broken and change is truly in the air.
Jo Ann will stop at nothing to learn more about the beguiling Wren. She brings her a gift in order to gain entry to her apartment, has her over to dinner to grill her, tries to follow her and finally, in frustration, steals some of her mail. Moody, intrigued by the discrepancy in the accident report, discovers that Wren, while not suspected of any crime, has used the names of deceased people as aliases. And Arnie, impossibly, has the bird sighting of his life right in his own crabapple tree: A nearly extinct Bali Starling.
Caught with the stolen letters, Jo Ann makes a startling confession and learns that letting go of a secret can be the most liberating act of a lifetime. This story embraces the imperfections that make us human, offers a way to set ourselves free and asks us all to take a good, long look at the wild birds in the sky.
Director(s): Dianne Dreyer
Writer(s): Audra Gorman
Producer(s): Benjamin Cox
Editor(s): Ian Blume
Cinematographer(s): Jack Donnelly
Production Designer(s): Jesika Farkas
Music Composer(s): Bill Frisell and Terry Adams
Mary Beth Hurt (Jo Ann), Aidan Quinn (Moody), Olympia Dukakis (Margaret), M Emmet Walsh (Walter), Macy Gray (Donna), Rachel Brosnahan (Wren)