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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Drama > Celebrity Impersonators > Mister Lonely (2007/Genius/IFC DVD)

Mister Lonely (2007/Genius/IFC DVD)


Picture: C+     Sound: B-     Extras: C-     Film: C



Harmonie Korine is a director trying to still find his way.  After the cult film Gummo (1997) which people still talk about, he made Julien Donkey-Boy (1999), one of the few Dogme ’95 works that was totally a stunt.  After trying everything from TV episodes to Music Video, Korine has finally made his first full-length feature film on film.  Ten years after his debut, we have Mister Lonely, an attempt to look at celebrity and the desire to be someone.


The film begins with an impersonator of Michael Jackson in his surgery/face mask era (Diego Luna of Milk and Frida) going around impersonating him, hoping to pick up money for his “talent” and he talks about why he wants to become someone else.  The film opens with the Bobby Vinton’s 1964 classic hit used as the title song, but the film is miles away from David Lynch’s Blue Velvet in originality and when the underrated Samantha Morton shows up as a Marilyn Monroe impersonator, the film collapses into a second rate version of Nicolas Roeg’s Insignificance (1985) also dealing with Monroe and celebrity.


The film is also too self-impressed, thinks anything it does is funny and interesting and eventually becomes a run-on of slow motion moments, clichés and when he starts throwing in any other celebrity impersonator he can come up with (Charlie Chaplin, Madonna, Buckwheat, James Dean, The Three Stooges, Abraham Lincoln and Little Red Riding Hood), it then tries to ape Marcel Carne’s Children Of Paradise.  Too bad his film makes a desert of it!



The anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image comes from a combination of shooting in 35mm and 16mm film, brought together in a Super 35mm film frame.  The film’s only advantage, it has a solid cinematographer in Director of Photography Marcel Zyskind, whose impressive work includes Code 46, 9 Songs and A Mighty Heart.  Too bad this transfer is a little softer than it ought to be.  The Dolby Digital 5.1 has some good ambient surround usage in a film that is dialogue-based with subtle uses of music.  Extras include a making of featurette and deleted scenes.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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