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Giuseppe Makes a Movie2014

  • 4.1
While the rest of America slept, DIY filmmaker/musician Giuseppe Andrews (a one-time teen actor in INDEPENDENCE DAY and DETROIT ROCK CITY) has made over thirty experimental features with titles like DOILY'S SUMMER OF FREAK OCCURRENCES, TRAILER TOWN and UTOPIA BLUES. Set in some demented alternate universe (i.e. Ventura, California), they are populated by real-life alcoholics and drug addicts, trash-talking senior citizens and trailer park residents dressed in cow outfits and costume-shop wigs, acting out booze-fueled vignettes of severe psychosis filtered through Giuseppe's John Waters-meets-Harmony Korine-meets-Werner Herzog sensibility. Director Adam Rifkin creates a wildly surreal, outrageously funny and strangely touching portrait of a truly Outsider Artist inhabiting a world few of us even know exists, as he follows Giuseppe and his seriously impaired troupe on the production of his latest two-day opus, GARBANZO GAS, starring Vietnam Ron as a Cow given a weekend reprieve from the slaughterhouse at the local motel. Beyond the sun-stroked Theater of the Absurd madness of Giuseppe's vision, there is a remarkable and endearing sense of family among the director, his amiably bonkers dad Ed, patient girlfriend Mary, Sir Bigfoot George and the rest of his surreal Trailer Park rep company. As skate-punk Spit sagely observes about Giuseppe's movies: "They're just like, nothing really makes any sense, and I don't know, that's kinda how reality is, and nobody really cares to accept that." The stranger-than-fiction documentary explores the Giuseppe universe, showing how the self-taught filmmaker captures an unexpected level of humanism and creates a family unit for a group of people who need one.

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1 member likes this review

Adam Rifkin's documentary follows very indie filmmaker, Giuseppe Andrews, as he attempts to shoot a movie in 48 hours. It really doesn't matter your opinion regarding Andrews work as a film artist -- this movie is concerned with capturing the spirit behind the eccentric and often low-end profane artwork.

This is what give Rifkin's study of Andrews work an added lift. Like Andrews, one gets the feeling that Rifkin is just as invested in chronicling the Giuseppe Ventura Film Troupe as Andrews is in making the film. It is clear that Andrews cares about the "stars" of his movies. The surprising element is that Rifkin seems to care just as much.

We get to know this group of assorted societal outcasts and misfits in a way that is both honest and surprisingly kind. From having seen several of Andrews' films I always had an uncomfortable cringe. I probably still will, but this film clearly demonstrates that Andrews is going for a great deal more than shock value.

One of the key moments in this documentary is when Rifkin captures Andrews discussing his favorite filmmakers. As Giuseppe discusses the works of Bunuel, Pasolini and Fassbinder there is no sense of irony. Andrews clearly knows his stuff and appreciates the art of film. When the artistic merit of his own work comes up, he is clearly immune to criticism. He feels his work stands on its own and doesn't require any defense.

Another exceptional moment comes up when Rifkin interviews one of Andrew's actors. A young barista who opens up that she dreams of being able to use art and her singing voice to touch people. As she began to sing I worried that Rifkin might use the moment as comedy. He does not. And to this young woman's credit, while her voice may not be great -- it would be heart to deflate the heart and soul she invests.

Rifkin's film is not aiming to provoke or create perversity. "Giuseppe Makes A Movie" cares about the filmmaker, his work and most importantly the non-actors who populate it. Like these out

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Member Reviews (2)

243496.small
top reviewer

Adam Rifkin's documentary follows very indie filmmaker, Giuseppe Andrews, as he attempts to shoot a movie in 48 hours. It really doesn't matter your opinion regarding Andrews work as a film artist -- this movie is concerned with capturing the spirit behind the eccentric and often low-end profane artwork.

This is what give Rifkin's study of Andrews work an added lift. Like Andrews, one gets the feeling that Rifkin is just as invested in chronicling the Giuseppe Ventura Film Troupe as Andrews is in making the film. It is clear that Andrews cares about the "stars" of his movies. The surprising element is that Rifkin seems to care just as much.

We get to know this group of assorted societal outcasts and misfits in a way that is both honest and surprisingly kind. From having seen several of Andrews' films I always had an uncomfortable cringe. I probably still will, but this film clearly demonstrates that Andrews is going for a great deal more than shock value.

One of the key moments in this documentary is when Rifkin captures Andrews discussing his favorite filmmakers. As Giuseppe discusses the works of Bunuel, Pasolini and Fassbinder there is no sense of irony. Andrews clearly knows his stuff and appreciates the art of film. When the artistic merit of his own work comes up, he is clearly immune to criticism. He feels his work stands on its own and doesn't require any defense.

Another exceptional moment comes up when Rifkin interviews one of Andrew's actors. A young barista who opens up that she dreams of being able to use art and her singing voice to touch people. As she began to sing I worried that Rifkin might use the moment as comedy. He does not. And to this young woman's credit, while her voice may not be great -- it would be heart to deflate the heart and soul she invests.

Rifkin's film is not aiming to provoke or create perversity. "Giuseppe Makes A Movie" cares about the filmmaker, his work and most importantly the non-actors who populate it. Like these out

1 member likes this review

helps give one the courage to create!