This is a tough one to talk about. On the one hand, it’s failure, maybe even a disaster. On the other hand, it’s so fascinating a failure that it’s worth seeing, and worth seeing on a big screen because it’s the kind of film that works best — when it works at all — by dominating your attention in the way that only seeing a film in a darkened theater can. (Alas that it’s opening on only six screens in North America today.) Anthony Hopkins (Bobby), as writer, director, and star, has created a phantasmagorical journey through the psyche of his protagonist screenwriter (if we can even believe that much about the central character) that wends from an L.A. freeway road-rage incident during which bullets fly to a desert movie location where the director is losing a grip on his noirish story to an out-of-control actor (Christian Slater [The Deal], in one of his most interesting performances yet). Is Hopkins’ character slipping in and out of a movie in his imagination, or are we? Playing off the multiple meanings of “to shoot” and weaving in asides about lost plots and screwed-up continuity, snidely hilarious sniping at Hollywood phoniness (John Turturro’s [Transformers] hotshot producer is a hoot), and Twilight Zone-ish appearances by actors out of old black-and-white classics, this is a manic Bugs Bunny cartoon of a head trip that is more enigmatic than enlightening, more experience than explication. But what it loses in lucidity it makes up for in the persuasive confidence of its delusion.
(Technorati tags: Slipstream, Anthony Hopkins, Christian Slater, John Turturo)