A sloppy and corny movie is a lot like a sloppy and corny person: much is redeemed if it has personality. DON'T WORRY has personalities. Plural. Weak script, but it is chock-a-block w/ odd, unkempt, fascinating performances. But what's the deal w/ Joaquin Phoenix? My theory is that his contracts stipulate he has to do no more than one or two takes. I repeatedly wonder: couldn't they have gotten another take of that?
Phoenix is incredible as always (even with a fake-ass wig); Jonah Hill plays it cool as a FABULOUS life-coach/AA sponsor; Rooney Mara melted my heart with that pixie haircut and sweet smile; Beth Ditto was an unexpected surprise... And I loved the animated cartoons that popped-up occasionally. But the film fails at being more than just the sum of its parts. Heartwarming and a nice homage to Callahan's life and work.
This movie's tone is flatter than the roads John Callahan speed-raced in his wheelchair, only intercepted by his cartoon sketches. Phoenix was born to play this role, Annu is boring compared to Lisbeth Salander and Beth Ditto was an enjoyable surprise.
A solid recovery-themed biopic, but with such a smorgasbord of counter-cultural talent (cast and crew), I was expecting something a bit more subversive and experimental. Nonetheless, a competent offering as always from Van Sant.
It is hard to say something that defines Van Sant’s recent movies more than their messiness. I don’t know why this exists, but it’s always inspiring to watch. It is being told through four framing devices. Chronology is a guessing game. It has a slew of questionable performances (only Hill pulls it off). I constantly questioned its intent before deciding it is a modest defence and embrace of mediocrity.