» » Just Add Pepper (2002)

Short summary

Pepper has always been in love with Sarah, but Sarah was way out of his league--the prettiest and most popular girl in town, she had her pick of boys, and Pepper wasn't one of them (although his older brother was). Now Sarah has returned from a trip around the world--and has completely changed from the town sweetheart into a punk. Pepper sees this as an opportunity to get to know her in a way he couldn't have before.

Film was shot in Summit, NJ, at the Video Station, which at the time was owned by Gwyn English Nielsen, who has a cameo as the video store clerk along with her daughter Saxony Nielsen.

User reviews

  • comment
    • Author: Sarin
    Just Add Pepper is a great first film from an emerging talent. The movie is well produced and directed, with good dialogue and acting.

    The movie is a testament to true independent movie making, with one writer and director working with unknown actors who are also trying to make it, using his own money. This shows that an "independent" film does not need a million dollars plus budget to achieve quality work. Filmed on location in central Jersey, Basler's film also is ahead of the current set-in-New Jersey trend of independent cinema.

    Be on the lookout for other Peter Paul Basler projects: Reality and Stuff and As Cool as Jennifer.
  • comment
    • Author: Natety
    Truly a cast of rising stars. Look for great things to come from this crew.

    Mike Low gives an amazing performance as a member of "Band at High School Dance". I'd pay any day to see Mike Low pretend to be in a band.

    I can't wait for more gems like this from Peter Basler. What's he up to anyway? When will Hollywood come around for Peter Basler. Who knows?

    And furthermore, when will Hollywood realize the talent hidden in Mike Low? If I see another Nicholas Cage film on the marquee before Peter Basler or Mike Low are making another film, I won't see it.

    But definitely check out this film for Mike Low and maybe Mike Tichy. The other main actors are great too, but surely nobody can deny Mike Low's performance.
  • comment
    • Author: Clonanau
    Honestly, I can't bash Just Add Pepper. Though, I am still mad at the cover art that makes it look like a gay-independent romance/comedy. (I will say though there are a lot of gay-references in here, but the two male leads on the cover, one looking at the other and the other apparently daydreaming, are just "friends.")

    It's a small, but well-made independent movie. Sure, it's predictable as all Hades, its comedy foreshadowed many scenes in advance and some of the jokes pretty lame/tame. That all being said, it's a cute little movie that you can tell the writer/director, Basler and actors/crew were really giving it there all.

    "Pepper" lives in a small town where once he fell in love with his older, much more successful brother's girlfriend. She left, and returned a year later to the small town and this gets "Pepper" excited and his best (bromance) friend jealous. I wonder where this is leading, and you'll know from frame one. Heck, even the "funeral" scene has been used so much, you wait for the obligatory death segment.

    Still, the heart they put into the feature, the lead actors, both "Pepper" (McCallum) and love-interest, Sarah (Gannon) really put their 110% into it, you actually have to admire the small movie. And that's one of the things I appreciate most in movies: genuine heart. They do, and despite the predictability and unoriginality, it hits its mark by just being true.

    I'd recommend just for a viewing. I am sad these actors didn't really go on to huge projects, but this single film should be watched for their one true stardom. Their fifteen minutes.

    (Side note: the music was pretty damn good in this. I understand the art of making small-budgeted, independent films, but they did a great job of making a very well made soundtrack throughout. I am not sure if the CD-soundtrack is available, but I would buy it.)
  • Cast overview, first billed only:
    Matthew D. McCallum Matthew D. McCallum - Ethan 'Pepper' McClure
    Jessica Gannon Jessica Gannon - Sarah
    David Ranson David Ranson - Forbes
    Darrin Bennett Darrin Bennett - Cubby (as Darrin P. Bennett)
    Michael Kennealy Michael Kennealy - Rich
    James M. O'Donoghue James M. O'Donoghue - The Father
    Frank Hendricks Frank Hendricks - The Admiral
    Kristen Caldwell Kristen Caldwell - Rita
    Nora Hummel Nora Hummel - Mrs. Johnson
    Robert E. Barron Robert E. Barron - Larry Potts
    Jim Frusciante Jim Frusciante - Preppy Customer
    Heidi Basler Heidi Basler - Preppy Customer
    Brigitte Decaulain Brigitte Decaulain - Date Girl #1
    Nikki Bohannon Nikki Bohannon - Date Girl #2
    Heather Connors Heather Connors - Sassy Flyer Girl / Video Store Customer
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