Sound: C+ Extras: C+ Film: C+
In another attempt to do a variation on Woody Allen,
writer/directors Greg Pritikin and Gary Rosen give us a neurotic, offbeat urban
comedy, but this one is about a guy who is having major problems and confusion
with his sexuality. What could have
been a disaster is not bad, though predictable and even obvious, but Totally
Confused (1998) at least has other things going for it.
For one thing, it has some funny moments. For another, the actors have some chemistry
and they are taking the material seriously enough to make it work. This is well acted and carefully throughout
out, so it was not hacked together. The
only problem is that when the loose elements synthesize, the conclusion is
nothing surprising. However, you
believe these people have known each other for a long time and most independent
productions cannot claim that these days.
The letterboxed 1.85 X 1 image was shot in Super 16mm and
looks good, making me wish this was an anamorphically enhanced transfer. This makes for a great argument of why film
is still better than even digital High Definition to shoot people. This would not look as good or work as well
if it had been shot on any video format of the time. The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo is not bad, but simple and offers no
surround information of any kind. That
is a competent enough combination that this was an enjoyable sit-though on the
performance level. Extras include a
producer/director commentary, an Incredibly Painful Saga + Totally
Confusing & Unabridged featurettes, cats interviews, and Jackie Katzman
Rosen and Pritikin also co-star in the film and this is
actually not a distraction.
These guys have talent and we would like to see what else they could
do. Also, the Gay aspects of the film
are not so obnoxious that you are sitting there during inundation thinking to
yourself “OK, I get it” or the like.
That’s a big plus. Their film
and some of their characters may be Totally Confused, but their filmmaking
choices are not and it is worth a look if the subject matter interests you.
- Nicholas Sheffo