This was the original "Real World". The show was a weekly documentary which followed the real life travails of the Loud family, a mixed up cluster of suburbanites. The show picked up lots ... See full summary »
Craig Gilbert, portrayed here by Gandolfini, James, was the award-winning documentary filmmaker who created and produced the original "American Family" series on PBS. After the controversy about the iconic series, it proved to be his final film credit. See more »
The Louds' Mercedes has a California plate with the number style 1AAA000. These plates did not appear until 1980. See more »
recreation of behind-the-scene story of the original reality show
In 1973, PBS aired reality show 'An American Family' after filming the Loud family for a year. It's 1971 in Santa Barbara. Filmmaker Craig Gilbert (James Gandolfini) meets Pat Loud (Diane Lane) but she's reluctant at first. Her confident Nixon-supporting often-absent womanizing husband Bill (Tim Robbins) is more interested. They have four kids. Lance (Thomas Dekker) is the gay son in NYC that Bill is still clueless about. Kevin (Johnny Simmons) and Grant (Nick Eversman) have their band. Delilah is the 16 year old having fun. Michelle (Kaitlyn Dever) is the youngest. Newlyweds Susan (Shanna Collins) and Alan Raymond (Patrick Fugit) are filming them.
I don't know how much of this has been fictionalized. It feels very over-dramatized. In many ways, this movie is misguided. A film about the Louds would be fine. This is about the show about the Louds. It's the filmmaking and the process behind the scenes that is more important. This is trying too hard to recreate the TV show. The use of the old footage side-by-side with the new footage only re-enforces that idea. It's at best a recreation of the behind-the-scene story. Gilbert's conflict with the Raymonds is probably the best moments of this film. The personal drama of the family is good but without the cameras would be just another personal movie. This should be more about the filmmakers than about the family.
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