Monday, September 7, 2015

Film Geek (2005)

Director: James Westby

Writer: James Westby

Composer: Jason Wells

Starring: Melik Malkasian, Ritah Parrish, John Breen, Dennis Adkins, Tara Walker, Taylor Nida, Daphne Carver, Kristen Torrianni, MIchelle Garner, Michael Ramirez, Jack Ryan, Kim Hill

More info: IMDb

Tagline: His Knowledge is your misery.

Plot: The story of Scotty Pelk, a socially inept video store clerk who gets fired from his job and becomes a sensation as an online film critic.

My rating: 6.5/10

Will I watch it again? Probably not.

You don't have to have much of a budget to make a good film.  There are some good performances here and some really funny shit like Scotty (Malkasian) frequently masturbating in the sink.  I'm sure most people will find Scotty or Malkasian's performance annoying as shit, much like just about everyone around him but then he's supposed to be that way.  He really knows his shit when it comes to movies and he's super passionate about it that all he wants to do is spread the love, except when he's spreading his love into the sink.  I sympathize with him except for the yankin' it in the sink part but I'm not annoying or bothersome like this guy.  This dude creeps me out a bit.  Here's a fun scene that's a little funny if it weren't so awkward (having invested the time watching Scotty up until this point because you know he's not going to take this well - you can get a glimpse of his video store work in the trailer).

Writer/director Westby takes four full minutes to fire Scotty which is a lot but it works very well and the scene doesn't overstay its welcome one bit.  For the most part the rest of the picture feels the same way but then there's the huge WTF with the happy ending.  It comes out of left field and it feels awkwardly shoe-horned in.  One of three things happened; it's real and it's either played as a joke on Hollywood's penchant for happy endings, or it's real and Westby handled it poorly as if to quickly wrap the film up or, and this is a good possibility, the happy ending is Scotty's fantasy cooked up to cope with his miserable life.  Even if the latter is true, there should have been more of a clue (either comically or with painful sadness) that this is in Scotty's head.  I'm actually OK with it being a dream or reality but considering how the film played out before it, the end should have been clearer.  I only watched it on Netflix streaming about a year ago (yeah, I'm that far behind in reviews) and it's no longer available that way.  Maybe the DVD has some insightful extras.  I'd actually watch it again with some commentary if it were available.  For film buffs this is definitely worth a look.  It's fun even if it's not entirely satisfying.  It's at least got me interested in seeing what else Westby has created. 

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