Documentarian and regular movie-arian. Friends with R. Crumb. Obsessed with blues records and comic books.
Crumb (1994) -- One of the best documentaries ever made. Robert Crumb is the most "normal" person in his family, which says a lot for how abnormal the rest of them are. He's able to channel a lot of his problems into his art, which the others weren't exactly able to do. Hard to watch, but Crumb himself is charming and funny enough to make the grimness more bearable.
Ghost World (2001) -- A great examination of "outsider" life which only occasionally goes too far to the "we're better than the masses" side (though these occasions are enough to turn some people off, which I understand). In the end I like it, and Thora Birch is perfect.
Bad Santa (2003) -- A perfect movie for, like, a fourteen-year-old... not necessarily an insult, but the movie is basically one joke: hearing a guy dressed as Santa Claus being foul-mouthed to children. The joke is pulled off well enough by Billy Bob Thornton (anyone else and the movie probably wouldn't have been funny at all), though, and it's entertaining enough, if not anything great. Ends up trying to be "heartwarming," in spite of its intention of being a dirty black comedy.
Art School Confidential (2006) -- Starts off okay with some interesting characters and a funny-enough parody of art school, but then the interesting characters are lost (and so is the art school parody) and it becomes a dumb and pointless noir. For example, John Malkovich plays a somewhat-depressed by very likeable and realistic art teacher who seems to put a lot of work into making his students good artists. But then, in the middle of the movie, he makes some kind of pass at the main character and then more or less disappears. In Angelica Houston's first scene, she brilliantly rolls her eyes at students who complain about the tired "dead white male" problem, only to barely appear again. We're left with the main character who is bland as shit (intentionally, but that doesn't make it better) and some weird drunken serial killer. Could have been good, but wasn't. Terry Zwigoff has had plenty of missteps in past movies, but this is the first that's all-out bad.
Copyright (c) Mar 2001 - Nov 2006 by Rusty Likes Movies