Monday, May 12, 2008
Harmony Korines first film since 1999’s Julien Donkey Boy is about a group of celebrity impersonators living on a commune in Scotland. It is his most strait ahead film so far. This one has a more ‘normal’ look to it and there is more linear plot development then Gummo or Donkey Boy. Don’t get me wrong it is still very strange. He sets up situations and scenes with the celebrities that are pretty damn surreal at times. One of my favorite images is of the Pope crying in a bathtub that is placed in a field while Buckwheat stands and washes him. The colors of the Scottish highlands and the costumes are beautiful. The film touches on a lot of ideas: identity, faith, masks, and absurdity. It seems Korine is building a set of motifs that run throughout his films: bathtubs, dirty water, BMX bikes, and dancing.
Diego Luna plays Michael Jackson and his moves are pretty right on. His costumes are pretty hysterical; he wears the little MJ facemask for a lot of the movie. Samantha Morton is looking a little bigger than usual but not afraid to show it and as always, her performance is great. Some other people in it are Werner Herzog, Dennis Lavant, and even David Blaine is in there for a second. There are a lot of scenes with most of the cast where Korine lets them hang out and improvise in character. Potion Lords sent a representative to the Los Angeles premier and had TIM ask Harmony about how he uses improv with his actors. Video below.