|Index||6 reviews in total|
OK, it's not "Bridge over the River Kwai", but it is also not an epic.
This is just what I look for in independent film, simple, clean, but
It is about door-to-door salesmen in Atlanta. They are delightfully evil, but no harm done; they were a perfect example of what kids need when they don't have a "functional family". This film maintained excellent production quality and the editing was fantastic! The soundtrack was a great combination of smart hip-hop and a rich, first rate, custom score.
For a film made for less than $200,000 this is as good as it gets, unless you are looking for yet another horror movie.
The shooting style was somewhere between cinema verite (hand-held and a lot of POV) and "The Outsiders" mixed with a little 50's "Leave it to Beaver". The contrast between modern and traditional looks definitely hit the symbolism on target of the simple vs the complex.
I had the pleasure of viewing this movie at the Atlanta, GA premiere at the Plaza Theatre (2009). First, how did they get that many characters in an indie film?! Very impressive! It had exactly what you wanna see in an independent film. The filmmakers used a big cast and a number of locations in combination with clear direction and cinematography. Often, an indie will seem like a thesis film or lack a message. However, Paper Boys hits its mark with no apologies. The movie deals with subject matter not often dealt w/ in big budget movies. That is to say, it deals with reality. The plot is harsh and unforgiving at times, but the viewer is rewarded with heartfelt performances, in particular by Chris Whitley and Justin Riddick. If you want to watch a movie and not feel as though you have "been there and done that", then see this movie.
Paper Boys is in my view a sort of "Last Picture Show"...with many of the very best elements of that classic. It is quite it's own picture though, with both the curses and blessings of limitations regarding indie films in general. Production value is very good and some of the acting is of very high quality. The screenplay itself is excellent and well above par for films of this nature. The music is a real standout. The score is lush at times, and minimalist at others. I would venture to say this certainly is not your "epic" film, but it is however exactly the kind of film one seeks from independent film makers. A well done personal statement, a room with a view. I highly recommend the film for it's originality and dark humor. Kudos to all involved in this project!
There's no one thing that stands out in this film. It is like some of
those old rock albums that had no singles, but the album was great.
This film had a great ensemble cast and it was more like an alternative
family than a cast. The music was, at times, quirky at others rich and
ambient, both appropriate. Unlike most American films, this film did
not tell me how I was suppose to feel; it just produced a complex
tapestry of emotions. Strangely, and without giving the ending away, it
allowed both a full tragic catharsis while leaving you with a positive
feeling on the way out the door. Just the way I like it. And the actors
were all really cute... that didn't hurt!
No doubt, one must compare the film to it appropriate genre family members, and credit must be given with consideration of the challenges of budgetary constraints and the challenges that go with that. However, though I agree, it was not "The Outsiders" (but similar), it had a great combination of simplicity contrasted with complexity as some others have said. I was not predictable, though I thought it would be. You cannot possibly predict the ending. It was satisfying on several levels despite the inherent inadequacies within low budget film making.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Let's start with the fact that clocking in at 2 hrs 15 mins this movie was 30-45 minutes too long, and in a movie that's poor to begin with, that adds insult to injury. Although there were a few good performances, they are the exception to the rule with this cast. (The child actor who played the lead character as a young boy was the acting highlight of the film)Also, some of the actors seemed poorly cast. I don't fully blame them as they were saddled with a terrible script and camera work that at times was so shaky. (The poor choice of shots often helped bring down the effectiveness of some scenes) The story revolves around Shawn, a 17 yr old just out of rehab and still trying to figure out what he wants or expects out of life, as well as his sexual orientation. He works with a group of men his age, led by a few 20 somethings who seem to do nothing but try to sell newspaper subscriptions, do drugs (this movie makes one of Atlanta's best and most well known bars look like a drug den), and bitch about their lives. This is a case of a possibly compelling story told poorly. The character development was sketchy at best and left you feeling like there should have been more. (Regardless of the long running time) The script was so convoluted I had a hard time following what character development there was, not to mention when they were cutting to flashbacks.(And on at least one occasion, who's flashback it was) This was a low budget production, and I applaud anyone who can turn out a finished movie to the public, but I'm not sure what could be done to make this film worth your time.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This looks like someone's homemade cell phone video, and the level of analysis is certainly no better. In nearly all cases, all that is shown of the film is a theatrical trailer which often provides no indication of what will make the film so disappointing. Early on we get an exception with paper boys where the examples for how bad the film truly is are apparent in the trailer. Most of the time the writer perceives the film as good, without any real demonstration or support, which is certainly difficult if this is all you can afford to pay for. The story line is reclusive at best broken up with an amateurish computer sequence of thrown popcorn. A coffee table book would be more useful and more fun. This film gets an F.
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