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159 Ratings

Silver Bullets

Directed by Joe Swanberg
United States, 2011


Silver Bullets is loosely based on Chekhov’s The Seagull. After his girlfriend is given the leading role in a new film by a renowned horror film director, a jealous young filmmaker responds by casting her best friend in his own film.

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Silver Bullets Directed by Joe Swanberg
…Dan Sallitt has averred that Swanberg employs improvisation “not to find new ways to get good performances, but rather to use the fiction as a tool to document the performers’ states of being.” There’s an obvious danger to this method when the filmmaker is also documenting himself. One can get caught in a loop of the self, doing certain things in order to record them, then recording the process of recording and so on. That loop is the focus of Bullets…
July 09, 2013
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So much for the plot, which, as expected, advances primarily through beer drinking, clothes shucking and aimless chatting. Though becoming more adventurous with his camera and editing this time out, Mr. Swanberg offsets those gains with a bloody finale of staggering self-pity. Whether this is a genuine move to ventilate real-life artistic despair, or simply self-indulgent posing, is impossible to determine; either way, the sequence feels wildly misjudged.
October 27, 2011
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Swanberg’s idea of making audiences “happy” is by acknowledging what his supporters and detractors have been saying about him for a number of years, but presenting these things within the same game of elliptical story-unraveling and confession that’s governed most of his other films. The artistic impulses remain consistent, if anything considerably more assured…
October 26, 2011
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