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Rafael Antonio Ruiz
Kenneth Wayne Bradley
HECKLER is a comedic feature documentary exploring the increasingly critical world we live in. After starring in a film that was critically bashed, Jamie Kennedy takes on hecklers and critics and ask some interesting questions of people such as George Lucas, Bill Maher, Mike Ditka, Rob Zombie, Howie Mandel and many more. This fast moving, hilarious documentary pulls no punches as you see an uncensored look at just how nasty and mean the fight is between those in the spotlight and those in the dark. Written by
All You Need Is Hate
Written by Stewart Henderson, Emma Pollock, Paul Savage and Alun Woodward
Performed by The Delgados
Published by Chrysalis Songs (BMI)
Courtesy of Mantra/The Beggars Group See more »
A few years ago I wrote that the infamous Monkees' movie "Head" was an accidental masterpiece. Rereading that review recently, I realized that many people may have thought I was writing sarcastically, ironically. I was not. "Head" IS a masterpiece of cinema, even though it undoubtedly was not what the Monkees or the filmmakers intended, it is just so brilliantly put together that whatever the motivations, a real document of the '60s had been produced.
"Heckler," similarly, is a film that reaches way beyond its initial intentions. Filmed 'on the sly' (i.e., whenever they could arrange an interview) over a three year period, the film evolved from a 'behind-the-scenes' tour documentary into a study into the relationship between comics and their hecklers, into an essay on the problematic relationship between performing artists and their critics generally (especially those on the internet, such as at IMDb). This evolution marks its 'accidental' character - the filmmakers are not trying for depth, they find it because it is there, and demands attention.
Some of this movie is funny, even hilarious, some even disturbing. As it should be. The film asks why we want to voice opinions of work that is solely intended to entertain us. Some of the answer to that is not pleasant to confront. Are we jealous of the more successful? Yet even the equally successful seem to have their opinions - why7 The film leaves the question with us, preferring to resolve the problem of how artists (of various genres) should deal with it (learn from it, burn it, move on).
I learned a lot from this movie. The cinematography is - well, anyone who could hold a camera and hit the record button did so. The editing is wonderful. There's no intrusive commentary except a handful of title cards. The people are real and captured in as real a manner as the present day (post 'reality TV) allows. It's just a brilliantly put together venture, however it came about.
My favorite part? - and I think the decisive moment of the film - Andrew Dice Clay's confrontation with a worm of a CNN commentator who had not the slightest idea what he was talking about, and then moved on to a story about Art Carney! You won't learn a lot about the mysteries of the universe, but you may learn something about yourself.
(2 BTW notes - (1. The dance towards the end is fascinating. 2. The 'bonus' material on the DVD is uniformly excellent.)
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