The Great Gatsby for our times. Full-on humanity and shit tons of heart here on display. Mark and Mike rock! It's a sad state of affairs, though, how many people think this is a mockumentary. Can it be they can't recognize passionate sincerity because they have never seen it in person or felt it themselves?
"IT'S ALRIGHT, IT'S OKAY... UHH..." I kept forgetting this isn't a mockumentary as some of the key individuals featured look like exaggerated caricatures, but I have a feeling we all know an ~auteur of this kind. THERE'S SOMETHING TO LIVE FOR (this line stayed with me for years!).
As far as an insight into what movie-making is all about, this might be the most telling I've seen. It's crushing to see these people’s failures, and therefore all the more uplifting to see their successes. Mike Schank, despite being in a documentary, wins the honorable mention prize in the film fest, just for being himself.
Not feeling the love for this one despite its reputation. At its most interesting in the segments which record the filmmaking in progress. The other material, focusing on the personal life of Mark and his family/network is repetitive and overlong. I'll give Chris Smith the benefit of the doubt in terms of his respect for his subject but in my book he comes very close to outright mockery.
Curiously sweet and heartwarming film of hope, passion and unyielding optimism. Throughout the film's core runs a charming innocence, a strong sense of family values and genuine love between friends in this simple tale of a man doggedly chasing his American Dream. Held together by an interesting and fascinating group of characters.
"...I’m checking my pockets for the acid, you know, ‘cause I was gonna drop my other three hits in the hospital, you know, then all of a sudden my ma walks in and she’s holding the bag of acid like this, you know, and I'm like damn, now I can’t drop it, you know, the rest of my acid, in the hospital...” Mike Schank. This film is honest, tender and so funny. Perfectly edited. "Making movies, it’s what he does”
Whatever you do with your life, do it with love. This film is the best kind of funny, sometimes it wavers on the edge of pity, sadness, etc.. but none of it matters because they're so funny, and Mark and his friends and family are endearing to the max. Love this film. It's basically - BEAUTIFUL.