It starts out like a Coen Brothers' film - a flaky expert on cult followings takes to the motel conference room circuit to promote his second book on the subject only to find indifferent audiences who only bought his first book or who are simply there because the lecture is free. After a particularly humiliating episode, he is approached by a proper Midwestern couple whose daughter appears to be in the grips of a cult. Utterly broke, he takes on the assignment and, in a truly bungling way, manages to abduct the girl and stash her in a cheap motel room. From here, he follows his book(s) to break her down and make her renounce her cult. But the girl seems to know a couple things herself, things not in the man's book or anyone else's. The writing here is quite remarkable - it maintains a continuity throughout even as the plot grows thicker and darker, a detached, ironic tone hard to describe well. The acting is offbeat, the perfect complement to the writing. The direction and production are spare, leaving the film more or less in the hands of the writer and the cast where it needs to be. Not a movie for people looking for gratuitous violence but the ending is certainly worth the wait.