Life/Drawing (Apartment 12) (Low Rent)

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Can a would-be artist find happiness with a woman who has never heard of Jackson Pollock? That's the dilemma facing Alex (Mark Ruffalo), whose life is finally going just the way he'd like; he's scored a one-man show at an upscale gallery, and is sharing an apartment with a beautiful model named Yvette (Anne-Marie Johnson). A few days later, however, Alex's life is in tatters; the curator of the gallery informs him his work is soulless and cancels his show, while Yvette hands Alex his walking papers. With no money and nowhere to go, Alex takes a job at a pizza place and finds an flat in a squalid building where the super, Ray (Alan Gelfant), has a habit of walking in unannounced at any time of the day or night. Along with a colorful group of neighbors, including a desperate middle-aged woman who can do wonders with Spam and a hooker with a remarkable collection of "work clothes," Alex meets Lori (Beth Ulrich), a sweet-natured woman who has just moved to L.A. from Colorado. At first they seem to hit it off, but Alex thinks Lori lacks big-city sophistication, and she knows nothing about modern art. Alex breaks up with her, but it doesn't take long for him to realize he's made a mistake -- or for his neighbors to start reminding him of that. Life/Drawing marked the directorial debut of Dan Bootzin, who co-wrote the screenplay with his producer and spouse, Elizabeth Rivera Bootzin; the film was warmly received in its premier engagement at the 1999 Taos Film Festival, then aired on U.S. cable in 2003, retitled Apartment 12. It premiered on DVD in 2006 under the same title.

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