Sometimes a little "Time Warp" is all you need to make things better.
Of course, that wouldn't solve the problems of main character, Helen, who falls into despair in John Schneider's latest film, "One Month Out," but it did make things livelier for Laura Cayouette, who plays her.
The New Orleans-based actress is probably best known for her role as Leonardo DiCaprio's sister, Laura Lee, in "Django Unchained." Her death scene in that film is a popular topic among film buffs.
"That's become an iconic scene, and it involved a stunt," Cayouette said, laughing. "And I performed that stunt, myself. I had to perform it several times."
Cayouette doesn't have any stunt work as Helen, but she does run the emotional gamut from outrage to the point of suicide as she watches her wealthy husband, Red, suffer from Alzheimer's.
Red is played by Barry Bostwick, known for his role as the straight-laced Brad in the cult classic film, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." That movie's debauched chaos includes the dance "Time Warp."
The dance starts with a jump to the left.
"John was setting up a scene, and he told Barry to hop to the left," Cayouette said. "I looked at Barry and said, 'Barry, did you hear John? He said to hop to the left.' That's when he got my meaning."
Bostwick stopped what he was doing and hopped to the left, then stepped to the right to start the "Time Warp" dance routine.
"We ended up singing and doing the entire 'Time Warp' right there, and it was one of the best moments during the filming," Cayouette said. "The timing was right, just when we needed some comedic relief."
That was in 2016. Schneider filmed "One Month Out" at his John Schneider Studios in Holden, and on location at the Guest House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center on Florida Boulevard and the chalet-style mansion, Oak Bend, on Jefferson Highway, both in Baton Rouge.
The movie wrapped and was ready to go. Then came a couple of floods.
"First, we had the 100-year flood in March of that year, which was followed by the 1,000-year flood in August," said Schneider, who both wrote and directed the film. "We had it on our computer drive, and though we had it backed up, the water got to it. But we were able to save it."
Schneider also had a second film on the drive, a comedy called "Three Leches," which hasn't been released. The flood was followed by financial problems which almost cost Schneider his studio.
If ever he needed the comic relief of the "Time Warp," it was then.
But in the end, Schneider came out on top. He and wife Alicia Allain, whose production company, Maven Entertainment, partnered with the studio in producing "One Month Out," found a technician in California to restore the film.
Now, "One Month Out" is showing on Schneider's CineFlix streaming service at cineflixdod.com/one-month-out, and he's thinking of giving it a big-screen premiere at the Stars 'N Cars Drive-In Cinema new to his studio grounds.
"I might do it," he said. "It would be great to see it on the big screen."
For now, though, viewers can use the streaming service to tune in on their televisions and various devices to watch as Cayouette's Helen tries to stand by her husband while disease pushes him away from her and toward his young, blonde caretaker, Sheila, played by Brande Roderick ("Baywatch").
Red says he wants to marry Sheila, which breaks Helen's heart, because she was considered "the younger woman" when she and Red married.
Cayouette refers to Helen as a trophy wife, but Alzheimer's has completely wiped Red's memory of her. Helen turns to her friend and mentor, Agnes, for support.
Agnes is played by Ruth Buzzi, who came out of retirement to take on the role.
"We'd heard Ruthie say she would only come out of retirement to work with John Schneider, so Alicia and I had dinner with her and her husband, Kent Perkins," Schneider said. "Kent and I have known each other since 'The Dukes of Hazzard' days."
Perkins also has a part in the film.
Though Buzzi is known for her own brand of comedy dating back more than 50 years to "Laugh In," Agnes is a dramatic role. She not only consoles but also warns Helen that Sheila has ulterior motives.
It seems Sheila has a history of scamming wealthy Alzheimer's patients out of their money.
"She's done it before," Agnes warns.
This makes Helen's heart ache even more, because she truly loves her husband, all of which mixes into an overwhelming emotional gumbo that could only be dispelled by Bostwick performing the "Time Warp" when the camera wasn't rolling.
Bostwick's easy-going personality was one of the things that appealed to Schneider, who pitched the part of Red to the actor while playing golf.
"He read the script and said, 'This is a part for Harrison Ford, not Barry Bostwick,'" Schneider said. "And I said, 'But I don't want Harrison Ford for the part. I want Barry Bostwick.'"
Bostwick delivers as Red in this story inspired by Schneider's friend, who caught a caretaker trying to scam her relative suffering from Alzheimer's.
"I remember telling her that she just took six months out of my life after she told me that story," Schneider said. "She asked me what I meant, and I said that her story inspired me to write my story."
That story became "One Month Out," which, despite its heavy content, does have a light at the end of its dark tunnel, when Red's true love for Helen is revealed through a surprise ending.
And, no, it doesn't involve Red performing the "Time Warp." But, hey, doesn't it make you smile knowing that he's dancing somewhere between the lines?
"One Month Out" DVDs will be available for purchase at johnschneiderstudios.com beginning April 1.