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Just caught the world premiere at Sundance tonight. At the Question and Answer with the director and lead actor, the audience asked two categories of questions. Either, "what drove you to make this movie" and "what did you learn about Chapman that is not already known" on one hand or "how many pounds did Jared Lito gain/lose to play the part" on the other. The actor Jared had more to say about the hardship of the physical aspects of this role than the director Jared had to say about the "why" of the movie other than some vague attempt to humanize Mark David Chapman and to show that his motivation apparently came from his sick adherence to the words of John Lennon and Salinger's Catcher In The Rye.
But such is already common knowledge gleaned from any standard article written about Chapman's murder of Lennon along with his last few days up until the shooting. The director admitted to no contact from the Lennon family or even with Chapman himself--why humanize someone you don't even care to meet? So, the audience wondered, what was the point? No wonder the most interesting thing to the audience the film was Jared the actor's weight commitment to the role.
Excellent acting throughout, especially Ms. Lohan's work, and solid technical film-making. But nothing interesting, thoughtful, insightful, exposing or illuminating to see.
A film about a madman causing pain and grief to a someone and their family, or in this case to millions worldwide, that sheds light as to how such person got to such a state is one thing, but one that that does nothing but execute a common knowledge play-by-play of the killer's last few days, a "Passion of the Chapman" if you will--and even that gives this film too much credit--does not seem to have a reason except possibly dull sensationalism. I say dull because, if not, wouldn't such a film have been made over twenty years ago?
A well done, well acted wasteful drag of a movie.
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