The Brown Bunny (2003) Poster

User Reviews

Add a Review
228 ReviewsOrdered By: Helpfulness
3/10
Definitely an acquired taste
btb-ii5 December 2006
If you can endure a 90 minute portrait of brooding self loathing with virtually no dialog and uninspired cinematography, this film is for you. The notorious scene with Daisy is incongruous. Perhaps, I am dense, but in my view, the emperor has no clothes. To be successful, this film should have elicited a strong interest in the lead character. But in the end, you have learned little about someone who is shallow and unappealing. This film portrays the journey of a motorcyclist tormented by demons vaguely hinted at in mysterious stops he makes in route. You see that he is attracted and repulsed by women. (Cheryl Tiegs, for those of you old enough to remember her from the 1970s is perfect in what amounts to a cameo.) But his encounters with women are so fleeting and glancing that you learn little until the end of the journey. Then, what you learn is too trite to support your having endured the trip with him. I believe Vincent Gallo had a serious idea, but the idea is unrealized.
84 out of 107 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
2/10
An experiment that fails
Yeah, I got it. It took a torturous 1-1/2 hours to get there but I was spared the 26 minutes more that others had to suffer through in the original cut.

Strange camera angles of pumping gas, lying in hotel rooms,urinating, eating, driving, driving, driving. Crying, hugging women wordlessly. Driving Driving Driving.

Yeah, the fellow is grieving a lost love with a flower's name, yeah, he's attracted to other women with flowers' names. Yeah he was sorta responsible for the loss of his love. B-b-b-b-ut we never know what that love was all about, was it as shallow as depicted here? You can't care about the main character, how can you. You know nothing of him.

This is one of the most self-indulgent movies I've ever seen. With a money shot at the end.

Avoid. 2 out of 10 for the Gordon Lightfoot song on the soundtrack.
94 out of 141 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
2/10
Narcissistic and pedant to the max...
Henry Fields19 July 2006
In the late 90's Vincent Gallo made his debut behind the camera with "Buffalo 66" (he also wrote it and produced it). It was a bittersweet story about two losers that fall in love with each other. It was a kind and so tender. So, I was really looking forward to see Gallo's next project... and let me tell you: WHAT A DISAPPOINTING!! He's suffered sort of an involution: once he was totally honest and now he's totally narcissistic and pedantic. In his second film he shows us Vincent Gallo riding his motorbike, Vincent Gallo getting' a couple of Cokes from a drinks machine, Vincent Gallo crying because the world is too beautiful, Vinczzzzzzzzzzzzz.....

There's no story, there's no script, there's nothing... Nothing to remark except what you all were expecting: that scene in which Chloe Sevigny gives a BJ to Vincent Gallo (of course). Well, Sevigny's skills for porno are improvable. Anyway, if you sit through "The brown bunny" just to watch that scene.. Well, you really need some love in your life!!

*My rate: 2/10
73 out of 115 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
Worked for me.
Rogue-3230 August 2004
I saw Buffalo 66 long before I started posting reviews at imdb, so I haven't written about that film but I loved it, I give it a 10, and after seeing The Brown Bunny at the Nuart on Saturday evening, I am here to report that I give Gallo's second feature film the same rating.

A lot of people seem to be misunderstanding this movie, or just not appreciating it, or perhaps both. There are many reasons for this, none of them valid in my estimation. The biggest protests, from what I've been reading, seem to be in the 'lack of plot' and 'vanity project' areas.

I can understand how the film would be a little slow for a lot of people, since it's basically an internal study, with none of the 'usual' mainstream (or even indy film) tactics. And in fact that's what I loved the most about the movie - how Gallo has the artistic wherewithal to be true to HIS vision of what a film can be, to how a plot of a film (and there IS a plot) can be played out in a different, less recognizable way, which leads to one of the reasons I think people are calling this a vanity project (aside from the infamous scene toward the end -- which I have to say is ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL to the film, once you find out what's really going on with our sick puppy Bud Clay) : because the movie doesn't follow a 'typical' set-up, requiring a bit more patience on the part of the viewer, a lot of people feel more comfortable dismissing this unbelievably profound piece of work as a 'vanity project'. In reality, I believe the opposite is true: Gallo is giving his audience more credit than they perhaps deserve, in presenting such a stark, uncompromising character study. The fact that a lot of this audience chooses not to accept him on his terms does not diminish his power and the power of this movie. Can't wait for the next one, Vincent.
152 out of 253 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
1/10
The man loves a mirror...
xande8821 September 2007
I see a lot of movies, and I've seen a lot o really bad ones. The worst of them is Oscar material if compared to this film. Never has a filmmaker been so self-indulgent, cool wanna-be, disgustingly megalomaniac, and completely oblivious to an audience -- an audience left to watch a total absence of creativity -- as in this ridiculous attempt at artistic depth and deeper meanings, supposedly hidden behind empty images and badly written lines. Terrible, unforgivable waste of precious celluloid.

Watching a road through a dirty windshield for hours might seem a clever metaphorical statement if you're on crack, or are as delusional as the director, who probably thinks of himself as the greatest film-making entity that ever lived.

Me? Well, those were 90 minutes of my life that I'll never have back and do something useful with -- although I wish I could.

But the truth is that it doesn't matter if a thousand people told you how despicable this movie is -- this is a movie that MUST be seen, otherwise you won't believe someone actually had the bad taste and lack of everything else (including talent and judgment) to make it.
56 out of 87 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
5/10
A potentially good film in serious need of professional editing
fontainemoore19 November 2006
While I give the film kudos for a story that I didn't see coming, after the first few minutes of needless (and extremely boring) motorcycle racing, I could see that I was NOT in the hands of a professional editor. The story could have been told far more effectively in half the time--or less. Gallo definitely needed to step away and let a professional editor do his/her thing and mercilessly cut scenes that didn't move the story forward.

While I could see that the author wanted the audience to crawl inside the protagonist, Bud, during the road trip, it didn't take that darned long to do it. Plus, his point of view changed too frequently. If we are inside his skin, then why are we looking at him for minutes in an excruciatingly long and tedious long shot? We need to see what he sees--at least with more consistency. I couldn't get my bearings in terms of what I was supposed to be experiencing and from what viewpoint.

There were other technical problems such as an inconsistency in lighting and shot quality with no apparent reason. And that spotted windshield drove me nuts. If a sign of depression and the carelessness that results from it, I'd have appreciated technique that didn't interfere so much with the visuals. Speaking of visuals, extending driving sequences to cover a song also seemed visually uninspired.

Probably most important, Gallo ignored common expectations of audiences and wanted things his way. I can't believe there wasn't an acceptable compromise. I'm pretty patient when it comes to art and film as art, but don't appreciate my sensibilities and expectations to be pushed beyond the breaking point when there appears to be no artistic justification for it. Too many scenes suffered from too few cuts and ran far too long, engendering more audience frustration than heightened emotionalism. I think this may be a result of an inexperienced and slightly self-indulgent filmmaker.

These technical problems aside, I'm usually able to spot a twist a mile away--but not this time. I wondered why all the women he encountered had flower names but that was just a hint that didn't make much sense until the end. But his name? Bud, as in "flower bud" and "clay" as in a substance in which flowers grow (he couldn't have named the character "dirt" or "mulch," after all) might have been a bit over the top. Again, typical of an immature filmmaker.

Was the encountered women's immediate sexual response to a complete stranger, fantasy on the character's part or the filmmaker's? I'd like to know how many men run into so many compliant females. From what I hear, not many--even when the guy is young, good-looking, and clearly pitiable. In this day and age, we ladies are a bit more cautious than that. Sorry, Vincent. While this may have been believable for males, I don't expect it was for very many female viewers.

I watched the film largely because I wanted to see if and how graphic sex could be incorporated into a drama without lowering it to the level of "high brow pornography." I think the film did a good job on that score, although I'd have preferred the use of a realistic-looking prosthetic such as that used in Boogie Nights. Perhaps the budget didn't allow for it or...who knows? It was certainly an interesting artistic choice and one that leaves me scratching my head in terms of the motive for including it. Symbolically, I'm a bit confused about it.

As effective and surprising as the end twist was, there could have been more in terms of Bud's descent into depression. But then, I'm a psychologist so am aware that symptoms are more than seeking surrogates, crying, and looking forlorn and depressed. Gallo missed, IMO, a chance to show more about what guilt and loss look like and how they affect people. Perhaps, this again, is a result of his inexperience. Personally, I think Redford's "Ordinary People" did a better job of showing a wider breadth of feelings of grief and loss.

Bottom line, although I thought the story had merit and did an excellent job of building to a surprising twist, I think it suffered severely in the journey towards the denouement. I hope Gallo matures and grows as a storyteller and filmmaker as I think he's got something to say worth watching.
22 out of 31 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
1/10
This is probably one of the worse film I have seen in the past 50 years
vetapublishing3 December 2006
Vincent Gallo According to the credits is a man with many ( probably too many ) talents. While I haven't seen any of his other films, this one lacks a, direction. b, editing c, cinematography d, intelligent script. Vincent Gallo as an actor acts well as a depressed person, but that is all. When he brakes down with his former wife or girlfriend he utters a sound which could be credited to a whingeing cat, but hardly to a man which I suppose he represents. The repetitiousness of the scenes,his portraits in the mirrors show that as a director he admires himself as an actor, but I do not consider this as a positive.

When I watched the first scene for about 15 minutes which is a motor circle race, I thought I put in the wrong DVD about motor cycle racing. I wished that I switched it off at that point. The rest of the film I watched for curiosity only. The sex scene sticks out from the film, like his prick from his trousers. It would fit into a porno film, but not what is considered an art-house film.

Just because there is hardly an intelligent sentence in the script, and luckily there are only a few sentences in the film, it does not make it a work of art. This is probably one of the worse films I have seen in the past 50 years

Andrew Barry
105 out of 178 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
1/10
Wtf?!?!?!?!?
shannygoat12 May 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is by far the worst movie I have ever seen. Driving across country by yourself is boring enough, but watching someone else drive across country alone is even more boring! There was only 10 lines of dialog in the movie. The camera angles were strange and the music was so depressing I wanted to slit my wrists. I think what bothered me more than the endless driving, was how these women seemed to think that he was a "hot boy". They would just randomly go with him although he looked and acted like a crazy person. Sane people wouldn't ask a stranger to drive across country w/ them, especially when she's like 16.

Although the "scene" was well hyped, if you've ever seen, given or received head, you've seen it before. More interesting to me was to find out that he just couldn't accept what happened and he was still w/ her in his mind. But I sat through 60 minutes of mindless driving for 10 minutes of an OK movie? So not worth it!
42 out of 66 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
10/10
The Brown Bunny is a radical American masterpiece
cinefilia27 June 2004
I had heard about the controversy surrounding The Brown Bunny (who hadn't?)--the feud with Roger Ebert, the graphic sex scene--so when I received an invitation to a press screening, I jumped at the chance to see what the trailer calls "the most controversial American film ever made". What the trailer and all the hype didn't prepare me for was the fact that The Brown Bunny could also be considered one of the most original American films ever made. In a time of overblown budgets and enormous productions with endless crew lists, Vincent Gallo has almost single-handedly made a concise, well-thought out, conceptual film--a poignant, touching love story. It's not often that a director's second film is more daring than his first--money, greed and Hollywood power seem too tempting to most and sophomore efforts usually represent the big sell out. Not so The Brown Bunny, not so Gallo the iconoclast. He manages to make a second film more interesting, more intimate, more revealing and more memorable than his first. And he manages to do it outside the system.

Gallo's instincts as a director are spot-on. Not only does he pull from Chloe Sevigny the performance of her career, he also solicits from a cast of complete unknowns and non-actors (including Cheryl Tiegs) painfully believable performances. I have always thought his talents as an actor were underrated, but surely The Brown Bunny will provide him his due as Bud Clay, a motorcycle racer undergoing a breakdown while driving across the country. Simply put, Gallo as Bud is devastating. At one point during the film, I was so tense watching him fall apart that I realized that I had been holding my breath through the entire scene. When you stop to think that he is also directing himself and directing the photography, it's that much more impressive.

I don't know how someone circumvents the Hollywood system to make a movie in this day and age, but it seems that Gallo has not only done that, but done it in a way that is memorable, haunting and visually stunning. This is a truly radical film made by a very courageous filmmaker, someone willing to tell a story, tell it honestly and suffer the consequences of his convictions. Pasolini would be proud.
178 out of 315 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
5/10
Looking for Daisy
Claudio Carvalho27 December 2014
After racing in New Hampshire, the lonely motorcycle racer Bud Clay (Vincent Gallo) drives his van in a five-day journey to California for the next race. Along his trip, he meets fan, lonely women, prostitutes, but he leaves them since he is actually looking for the woman he loves, Daisy (Chloë Sevigny). He goes to her house and leaves a note telling where he is lodged. Out of the blue, Daisy appears in his hotel room and soon he learns why he cannot find her.

"The Brown Bunny" is an independent very low budget movie by Vincent Gallo. The plot is developed in slow pace and is dull and boring in many moments. The revelation of Daisy's secret is totally unexpected. However the movie has become famous only because of the unnecessary fellatio of Chloë Sevigny, maybe to satisfy Vincent Gallo's ego, since does not add anything but a polemic scene to this movie in a poor hype. My vote is five.

Title (Brazil): Not available on DVD or Blu-Ray
6 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
loading
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews