Friday, April 26, 2013

Mistaken for Strangers (2013) Tribeca 2013

Brothers in art
Advertised as a film about the group The National, the film is actually about director Tom Berninger who is the brother of The National's lead singer Matt. Tom is an amateur filmmaker who was asked to be a roadie for the band. Figuring he'd have unlimited access Tom decided to film everything that happened, however what happened was not what he expected.

If you go into the film expecting the film to be about the group you're going to be extremely disappointed. I know I was. What I got instead of the film I expected was look at a lovable loser trying desperately to make good. Its a film where we watch as we see someone forced to examine himself and his life. Its also a film full of not so much sibling rivalry, but sibling love and loyalty that is tempered by the need to be realistic,Matt loves his brother unconditionally but knows there are limits.

A very good film how  where you react to the film is going to depend upon how you react to Tom. Tom is a sweet guy, clearly he has talent, the trouble is he has a chip on his shoulder and as much as he wants to succeed he'd probably throw it all over in order to party. As I say he's a sweet guy but at the same time he is more than a little bit of a jerk. Until it's pointed out he never sees that the only reason he was on tour was who his brother was.  Watching the film I couldn't believe it took them 8 months to fire him...

...more importantly you have to admire that Tom put all of this out for the world to see. Any rational person would have hidden it all away. Tom doesn't and it makes for uneasy but compelling viewing.

For me the film is a largely good film. The problem for me is that while the film is good all the way through, there are a few moments where the film springs magically to life and it isn't until late in the game when Tom says "I don't know why I'm here" that it becomes something truly amazing.

Worth a look, so long as you don't expect a film about a rock group.

No comments:

Post a Comment