Documentary on the Friedmans, a seemingly typical, upper-middleclass Jewish family whose world is instantly transformed when the father and his youngest son are arrested and charged with shocking and horrible crimes.
The quest to find the author of a well reviewed but now long forgotten and long out of print novel is the crux of this documentary. This is a do it yourself affair as director Mark Moskowitz chronicles his personal quest to find the author of The Stones of Summer, a book he read 30 years after buying it.
This is a film that any avid or compulsive reader can relate to, especially if one has ever fallen in love with an author and sought to find out everything about the person who has just touched their lives. I'm just not certain that many o us would go to the lengths that Moskowitz goes to to get his man.
For me there are two problems with the film, first is the fact that for a good portion at the beginning of the film we don't really know what is driving the quest. Yes, its a good book, but why that book? Repeatedly we're told that no one has read it and as things unfold we aren't even given a synopsis of "the grail", we're just told that its a great book as we see Moskowitz buy and hand out copies of the book to his friends. There is a lot of talk about books other than Stones of Summer, which would be fine, but they are better defined than the book at the center of our tale.
The second problem is that Moskowitz, while he seems to be a nice guy didn't seem like some one I'd want to hang out with. Granted the film is about his obsession, but thats all it seems to be about at times and I never really warmed to him as a person, which hurts since the movie, ultimately is about him.
My recommendation is to find a library and borrow it. You may like it, you may not. If you aren't a book person I'd stay away since the "fan" aspect seems more rooted in things literary than in universal themes.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?