After the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, Steven Soderbergh dropped a plot element about placards telling How to Survive a Hotel Room Fire, a phrase that he had also intended to use as the film's title. See more »
Catherine's black notebook and pen suddenly appear on the airplane armrest between shots, after her tape player clicks. See more »
I think Lee is like... Have you ever seen a dog get hit by a car but walk away? And there's this impact and you know something terrible has happened to that dog but it walks away and it doesn't seem to even realize the implications cause it just goes on. But you know that something terrible has happened inside this dog. That's, I think, what happened to Lee. It's like she's a dog that got hit by a car, and she walked away and she's still walking, but some very, very important things inside her ...
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After the credits, there's a short scene in which we see Brad Pitt explaining a scene he's about to shoot for the movie-within, 'Rendezvous'. See more »
Much-maligned indie exercise turns out to be a cinema masterclass
Steven Soderbergh's much-maligned digital satire of Hollywood took an unfair savaging at the hands of American critics, who seem to resent the fact that the man has become the single most interesting and consistently exciting film director currently working in America. Designed as a deliberately low-budget, quasi-improvised indie production to counter-balance the big studio production of "Ocean's Eleven", "Full Frontal" was shot according to a Dogme 95-like manifesto (the actors had to drive themselves to work and do their own wardrobe and make-up, all the locations are pre-existing), and is a cross between the confessional nature of "Sex, Lies & Videotape", the multi-story structure of "Magnolia" and the film-within-a-film framework of François Truffaut's "Day for Night". It's the tale of a day in the life of six Los Angelenos connected in some way to the film industry: budding screenwriters Enrico Colantoni and David Hyde Pierce; Pierce's sister-in-law Mary McCormack, a struggling masseuse, and wife Catherine Keener, a human resources VP on the verge of a nervous breakdown; black actor Blair Underwood and film star Julia Roberts. Soderbergh follows the day's events as if he were shooting a documentary, in grainy (post-produced) DV, intercutting it with 35mm photography of a film in production starring Underwood and Roberts, whose plot is supposed to echo the main characters' situations. The Chinese-box structure only really becomes comprehensible about a third of the way in, and what looks at first like a self-indulgent exercise in the mechanics of low-budget filmmaking quickly becomes a cinema masterclass as Soderbergh effortlessly navigates the veritable maze of referential layers between film and life to the point you can no longer distinguish where film ends and reality begins, throwing in a number of celebrity cameos (Brad Pitt, Miramax's Harvey Weinstein, Terence Stamp reprising a scene from "The Limey") that blur the borders even further. You have to be open for it, but if you are you'll be richly rewarded.
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