Having fled his native Iran and landed in NYC's East Village, director Ramin Niami wanted to make a film about his new hometown and figured "The Lower Depths" -- Maxim Gorky's play about gutter-life in turn-of-the-century Russia -- would be a good place to
start. The result has little to do with Gorky, and the story is riddled with holes. But it's still an oddly endearing comedy. In a Lower East side apartment building, a group of marginalized New Yorkers lead lives of not so quiet desperation: Nosy, lovelorn therapist Betty (Sandra Bernhard) has
sworn off of one night stands, and this time she means
it. Jaded Shakespearean actor Graham (Peter Stormare) hope...