When Christian, an LA trust-fund kid with casual ties to Hollywood, learns of a secret affair between Tara and the lead of his film project, Ryan, he spirals out of control, and his cruel mind games escalate into an act of bloody violence.
Nolan Gerard Funk
In 1965, Bob Crane, who had achieved some earlier success as a television supporting actor, was working as a successful morning radio DJ at KNX Los Angeles. Despite enjoying his work, photography (especially of the female form) and drumming, Crane wanted to be a movie star. So it was with some reluctance that he accepted the title starring role in a new television sitcom called Hogan's Heroes (1965), a WWII POW comedy. To his surprise, the show became a hit and catapulted him to television stardom. The fame resulting from the show led to excesses and a meeting with home video salesman and technician John Carpenter, with who he would form a friendship based on their mutual interests, namely excessive sex (for Crane, purely heterosexual sex) and capturing nude females on celluloid. His fame allowed Crane to have as much sex as he wanted, which was incongruent to his somewhat wholesome television friendly image, and the way he portrayed himself to almost everyone except Carpenter and his...Written by
The bald actor who plays a reporter interviewing Crane about midway through the film is Crane's real son, Bob Crane Jr. (Robert David Crane). See more »
There is a glimpse of the famous Capitol Records building painted silver. At the time of the film, it was actually painted black to resemble a stack of records. See more »
I think it's perfect for me. I mean, this character Hogan, he's quick on his toes, he's hip, he's a con artist. I don't wanna jinx it, but I think it's what I've been working toward my whole career!
Really? You've been working towards a Holocaust comedy?
Please, not in front of the children! They look up to me!
They're small. They look up to everyone.
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Director Paul Schrader stated at the Toronto International Film Festival that the film originally garnered an "NC-17", but was toned down to get an "R". The problem was a scene where hardcore pornography is seen on a television in the background, as well as a scene where a girl is clearly seen giving oral sex with motions. The version shown at the Film festival was uncut, as the will be the International version. See more »
Actor Bob Crane (Greg Kinnear), star of Hogan's Heroes, forms a friendship with a video enthusiast (Willem Dafoe) and together they become obsessed with sex, swinging, and photographing or filming the action.
This is a brilliantly disturbing movie. Kinnear carefully plays Crane as a blank-faced cypher who cannot see himself, and is comfortable with the surface of things. Thus photography is the perfect obsession for him; he can look without participating, even when he's looking at his own participation. Auto Focus is a clever title, referring to both the photography and the only person upon whom Crane can focus. He is lost in a world of obsessively meaningless behavior.
A look at IMDb's message board for the film shows that one of Crane's two sons is fighting the misinformation presented by director Paul Schrader and Crane's other son. It does seem that the movie distorts some biographical facts, but what biopic doesn't? This story of obsession and doom is worth much more than its attention to one man's biography.
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