With a structurally challenged script that never should have gotten the green light, Leave is a tedious exercise in cleverness for its own sake, pulling an eleventh-hour Identity-style plot twist that renders pointless every bit of preceding action and (living up to its title) leaves a sour aftertaste of having been conned. A writer (Rick Gomez) heads into seclusion to do some work and think through a recurring nightmare. Along the way he has a tense Duel-style encounter on a desert highway and soon thereafter meets a man (Frank John Hughes) who claims to be his long-dead brother.

If only Leave had focused on ripping off Duel, it at least might have had some entertainment value; but writer-actors Gomez and Hughes would prefer to subject viewers to their reflections on the meaning of stomach cancer and the powerful therapeutic functions of memory. Gomez, with his furry, somnambulant face and staring eyes, does nothing to enliven Leave, nor does antagonist (?) Hughes, his facial resemblance here to a young Jack Nicholson notwithstanding. Conspicuously billed Bryan Cranston of Breaking Bad fame has only a throwaway cameo as a flamboyantly dressed Brit at a cocktail party.

2 of 5 possible stars. Ideological Content Analysis indicates that Leave is best left alone and that it is also:

3. Prejudiced! A hoodie is as always the cloak of evil intentions, so that Leave perpetuates the insensitive stereotype that would take innocent Trayvon Martin’s life.

2. Anti-redneck. A Hank Williams song playing in a rustic diner might just as well be a satanic chant in the ears of city folks. Also, the service is bad.

1. Anti-religion/anti-Christian. The writer recalls losing his faith after being beaten in a Catholic school.

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