Paranoid Park

Paranoid Park Poster

Rated: R

Running Time: 85 Minutes

Year: 2008

Boobs: Zero

One Sentence: Don't cast your main star from myspace.

This movie was the Austin Chronicle's pick of the week.  The movie at which it says you should watch over all others.  The other movie's that did come out this week were lackluster, so I guess I should have taken that into account when I volunteered to watch a movie who's main star got cast from myspace.  Gus Van Sant has always had his finger on the pulse of youth it seemed.  It portrayed a picture of kids in ways that seemed real, and touched on things that we forgot about as adults.  I think he also might be losing that touch and needed the myspace kids to help "keep it real."  In the end it kept it boring instead. 

The movie plays out as one of those Independent movies.  It has independent actors, it's a non-linear story, and it is a subject that is independent.  It is about skateboarding high school kids, or 1 kid.  It's independent!  Did you hear me!  It painfully screams it's independence so much that it forgot to be interesting or at least thought provoking.   It doesn't provide anything that I felt was up to the par of a top 10 film at Cannes that it claimed last year.  

This movie might of had a much different feel if the actors were not wooden kids with no acting ability at all.  It was portrayed just as I think a real 16 year old would approach any job, with apathy and the bare minimum of work to get the job done.   While this is good and all for the reality of the movie, the failure in a movie is, the wooden acting of a 16 year old does not come out as what a 16 year old would actually do in the situation he was placed in.  So instead it feels out of place, and not real where reality was trying to be shown.  In the end, the movie is ok, it is completly rentable or catch it on IFC when it comes out.  There is no need to go out of your way to catch this one in the theater.  

2 Stars 


  • Wow. This is actually one of the best films I have seen all year. One of Van Sant’s finest anyway.

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