The story is inspired by a real-life fan who pursued Limp Bizkit's frontman Fred Durst many years ago, and the screenplay was written by Durst and Dave Bekerman. It follows Moose (played by John Travolta), who gets cheated out of meeting his favorite action hero, Hunter Dunbar (played by Devon Sawa). Moose then hunts down Dunbar to get the celebrity interaction he feels he deserves. Harmless at first, Moose's actions begin to take a dark turn. Against the advice of his friend Leah (Ana Golja), Moose begins to make frequent visits to his hero's private home. As the visits continue to escalate, Dunbar finds himself in increasing danger.Written by
Leah says to Moose that she almost captured a photo of Conrad Hall. Conrad W. Hall is the film's director of photography, and also the son of Conrad L. Hall. See more »
At the end of Moose's excited call to Leah about the StarMap app, John Travolta accidentally calls Ana Golja "Moosie", his character's name, instead of "Leah". See more »
[Dunbar wakes up and finds himself tied in his bed. Moose enters the room dressed as Jason Voorhees and approaches Dunbar, knife in hand]
Wait, wait, wait! Wait! Wait!
[Moose stabs Dunbar in the chest several times, but Dunbar realizes it's a retractable prop knife. Moose sees the stunned look on Dunbar's face and takes off his mask]
I fooled Hunter Dunbar! I fooled Hunter Dunbar! I'm a... I'm such a good actor!
Are you out of your mind?
See more »
For some reason, all opening credits are repeated at the end of the film. See more »
You could respect this movie on John Travolta's performance, which is pretty good. He plays the role somewhat believably, and isn't necessarily over-acting or anything like that. Co-stars like Devon Sawa also turn in some good performances as well. Everyone is reasonably believable.
The cinematography is also pretty okay. Scenes are well staged, well lit, and generally the movie looks good, I suppose. On a production level, everything works!
But it's still a very difficult movie to watch. Travolta plays a very innocent character named Moose, who is on the autistic spectrum, and the whole movie is essentially about beating up on him. When it's not beating up on Moose, it's asking you to feel sorry for him. I can't remember a single moment where the movie portrays this guy as a human being. Every single scene is an uncomfortable test of your empathy as everything that can go wrong, does, to the point where it becomes an unrealistic spiral.
As far as concepts for a movie go, that could work, but The Fanatic does not have the subtle touch required to broach the subjects it attempts to tackle. It tries to avoid making Moose look like a monster, but it's still mean spirited and dehumanizing. It's like 88 minutes of watching bullies pick on a nerd, both directly and indirectly, and I found that hard to sit through. Moose is presented almost as a circus side show act, where you're meant to gawk and point and feel pity. This is a movie that revels in second-hand embarrassment.
I could not shake the sense that former musician and Director Fred Durst was working through some issues, and he's admitted the movie is based on personal experiences. I'm sure he's dealt with some pushy fans in his life, and that sucks for him, but this seems like a poor way to express that.
And things don't get any better. Moose continues his downward spiral, constantly making the worst possible decisions, to the point where it almost becomes a cartoonish self-parody. Moose's autism is used as an excuse to wave away even the most absurd plot twists, and it all comes to a peak in a climax I would describe as "frustratingly convenient." I don't know what this movie was trying to say.
The more I thought about it, the angrier I got, as the credits rolled. This is a cynical movie at best. It offers no justification for why it exists. It says nothing. It's an excuse to make you cringe for an hour and a half. Maybe you like that, but it's not really my style. Though the rest of the film may be competent, as a story, it just sucks.
Avoid The Fanatic.
74 of 100 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this