A comedy to be sure, but an exceedingly strange one, or better yet, described by the director as an “objectional comedy about disappointment and forgiveness”, the second feature from Perry (Impolex) follows the transformative road trip of JR (comedian Carlen Altman) and her brother Colin—played by the director—with whom she has a hopelessly complicated relationship. In beautifully grainy black and white 16mm, lensed by talented DP Sean Price Williams (Frownland), JR and Colin’s sibling rivalry simmers as they encounter past lovers, crushes, bullies, and classmates, and as put so well by Eric Allen Hatch of the Maryland Film Festival “only to rediscover why neither of them can stand each other. Along the way, they encounter a world full of people whose opinion of the duo is equally low.” —BAM
There are moments where its "mumblecore" roots become too prevalent for my taste, but ARP's ultra-grainy vision of a drab world inhabited by deviants, losers and jerks makes the film shine among its contemporaries. In the constantly expanding ocean of American indies that deal with talkative, off-track 20-somethings, this is one of the only titles I'd recommend. I'm interested in seeing what Perry takes on next.
Acidly hilarious and keenly observed, "The Color Wheel" is enough to restore one's faith in American independent cinema. I love how Alex Ross Perry and Carlen Altman's vocal tics and off-kilter line readings make most scenes feel adlibbed, when in fact the entire film was scripted. Carlen Altman deserves to be the next Greta Gerwig-style indie darling after taking such a narcissistic character and somehow making her endearing thanks to Altman's natural comedic talent. "The Color Wheel" is a road movie in which two people slowly realize that they don't fit in anywhere in the world except with each other. The fact that they're brother and sister complicates things but, refreshingly, the filmmakers don't treat their characters' actions as some grave transgression; these two misfits are simply allowed to be.
Independent Spirit Awards nominations, Daney on Godard, Jack Nicholson & Antonioni, a trio of Film Comment pieces, and more.
In our annual poll, we pair our favorite new films of 2011 with older films seen in the same year to create fantastic double features.
This year’s edition features the premieres of Eastwood’s J. Edgar and Soderbergh’s Haywire.
Our unique awards for this year’s Locarno: prizes for films by Straub, Tetsuya, Perry and one by none other than Vincente Minnelli.
Cinema that talks hip: Raoul Walsh’s Me and My Gal (1932) and Alex Ross Perry’s The Color Wheel (2011).
The Color Wheel is 83 minutes long. About 9 minutes and 40 seconds of those 83 minutes (i.e. roughly 1/9th) are taken up by a single shot