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AT THE VIDEO STORE is an innovative and rambunctiously entertaining documentary film by director James Westby (Film Geek, The Auteur, Rid of Me). Equal parts personal essay, intense ... See full summary »
I saw Film Geek at the Longbaugh Film Festival in Portland, OR not knowing what to expect, but I found that I discovered a wonderfully entertaining and quirky little gem of a movie. Melik Malkasian gives an incredible performance as Scotty Pelk the film geek who is a socially lacking, movie-obsessed video rental store clerk. When he is not at work, he spends most of his time serving as webmaster for his movie review website which hardly gets any traffic, masturbating, and obsessively watching movies alone in his apartment. The rest of the time he pathetically lusts after the bratty Kaitlin and and the icy-blonde Cindy who both despise him. Being as utterly clueless as he is he continually pursues them despite their rejection of him. In one of the funniest scenes in the whole movie life hits the bottom of the barrel for Scotty when he is fired from his job at the video store. He goes crazy running about the store turning everything into chaos. For this scene alone Malkasian should garner some awards attention. He combines the perfect balance of humor and quirk that is nothing short of brilliant in this scene.
Despite the low point Scotty has reached it also turns out to be a turning point when he meets the captivating Niko. Niko is a cool, Portland-hipster who loves movies (almost) as much as he does. Unlike everyone else in his life she doesn't mind discussing them with him and connecting with him in general despite his nerdy ways. Scotty soon realizes that he might just have met the love of his life. One of the main problems is that her scummy boyfriend just isn't going to let go so easily. Will Scotty's eventual fame at having his website be discovered enable him to win Niko in the end? Or will his clueless ideals and delusions just keep getting in the way? James Westby does an impressive job with his direction, writing and heartfelt realization of the many memorable and engaging characters and situations that make up Scotty's odd, crazy, hilarious and yet at times somewhat sad story.
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