Maxwell McCabe-Lokos. I remember hearing that name and thinking it must be attached to someone very sophisticated, and very complicated- someone who came from one of those sprawling strange pedigreed families with downtown connections and uptown brains- like Salinger’s Franny and Zooey or Wes Anderson’s Royal Tenenbaums. Then I met him, and found most, but not all, of my suspicions to be true.
The second oldest of five kids of Hungarian (Lokos) and old Toronto Irish (McCabe), Max grew up wandering the back alleys of Parkdale, first gaining notoriety as a member of Toronto band The Deadly Snakes. Taking the stage name Age of Danger, he sang and yelled and jangled and hammered the songs out. More than once I watched him hang from the rafters and climb on top of the piano or organ he played - his wild energy a nod of what was to come.
You could tell Max has something of a thespian in him; a talent for animating the moment in whatever way necessary: invite it to eat horse, drown it brandy or pastis, slip it a psychedelic, take it to Spain, get it dancing, dress it in the finest vintage suit or argue it to death. Towards the end of his music tenure he began acting, and when he got a part in Alison Murray’s Mouth to Mouth spending three months in Europe alongside fellow up-an-comers Ellen Page, Jim Sturgess and August Diehl, he began to take what he was doing more seriously. Parts in Lars and The Real Girl, The Tracey Fragments, Land of The Dead and The Incredible Hulk followed.
Interested in helming a project, Max co-wrote, with Kelli Harms, a leading role for himself resulting in The Husband, a film he stars in and produced. Directed by Bruce McDonald (The Tracey Fragments), this film is about a young father who loses his shit when his wife is imprisoned for sleeping with her teenage student. It premiered at TIFF this past year, hit the festival circuit, and garnered raves reviews.
There is a dark absurdity that tinges his interests and humours him that you’ll find in The Husband, his music, and his other projects (I suggest you check out Zondervan Bronte). Passionate, opinionated, uncompromising, hostile, animated, whip smart and giddy, Max’s bravado is both intoxicating and at rare times, off-putting, but only when the bombastic swagger gets in the way of what he is at heart- an enthusiastic, curious and kind soul that I’m very pleased to call my friend.
The Husband is playing now at the Tiff Lightbox until next Thursday, March 27th.
-- Erinn Langille