Writer, director, and actor Christopher Schaap’s wonky, but likeable debut feature Prom King, 2010 tells the story of Charlie (played by Schaap), a twenty year old, old Hollywood worshipping, virginal university freshman in New York City and his unsuccessful attempts to land a boyfriend. Still hung-up on the childhood crush who spurned him, pressured by his friends into finding a mate, and wrestling with the religious background of his parents, Charlie tests the NYC dating waters with mixed results and even more questions about what it means to be happy than when he started.
The writing and performances throughout Prom King, 2010 are sometimes clunky and slightly off, sometimes feeling like Schaap (who also probably isn’t the best choice of lead) called in a lot of favours from friends to make his project a reality. Despite the low-fi, off the cuff feeling of Prom King, 2010, Schaap does have a great visual eye and sense of purpose as a filmmaker. His material, on the whole, is solidly realized and well thought out. There’s never a moment of Schaap’s story that doesn’t ring truthful or honest, making up for any other novice filmmaking faults.
Schaap’s heart and mind are always in the right place, making Prom King, 2010 not only a film worth seeking out despite some obvious technical and performative faults, but also makes the filmmaker a talent worth keeping an eye on.