Sunday, August 10, 2008

Paranoid Park

I'm sure that most of you haven't heard of this movie, but if you happen to come across it in Blockbuster, keep going.

Directed by Gus Van Sant (who also directed Good Will Hunting and Elephant), Paranoid Park is about a teenager who accidentally kills a security guard at a railway station and his attempt to deal with what he did. The premise is interesting; the movie is not, and the storytelling certainly doesn't help. The chronology of the narrative gets flipped around with no apparent reason at random times, and not in a cool Memento sort of way, or even a regular flashback sort of way, but in a haphazard and confusing way. Additionally, the story moves along very slowly. I'm not against slow movies, but this was stylisticly/cinematically slow as there were frequently 30-second shots of the main character walking in which nothing was said and nothing occurred. I'm not sure if GVS was trying to indicate the time the kid had to contemplate what he had done, but it got pretty old pretty quickly.

One of the few positives of the film is the narration. It's not brilliant, it's not witty, it's not profound. What it is, however, seems to be what a normal teenager would say. As much as I enjoyed Juno's wit and temperment, how many Juno's are there in high schools across the country? This kid was very normal which made the film feel more real, which is always a bonus. Other than that though, Paranoid Park was boring and in the end, there was no discernable moral or point to the story. I'm looking forward to a film I can recommend (since both this film and Revolver had "stay away" alterts).

Final Grade: D+
Blurb: Painfully slow and without much point or merit, this isn't a film you should pick up anytime soon. Gus Van Sant is going backwards.


  1. Does Moon Governor ever review movies anymore?

  2. he's a slacker, plain and simple. you know this.