Sunday, January 17, 2010
Todd Solondz' Happiness
I just saw Todd Solondz' Happiness for the first time and loved it. The opening scene was my favorite part. Jon Lovitz gives an impeccable performance and the fact that Solondz was able to get that performance out of him is truly impressive. John Lovitz is perfectly talented, he just rarely does such honest, emotionally driven work. Todd Solondz teaches directing at NYU in the 2nd or 3rd year of the graduate program - I MUST HAVE HIM! I hope so anyway.
Aside from that the film is disturbing, fun, hilarious in a sometimes over the top way (which is funny because it's a bunch of subtle moments layered over big ones). He finds humor in the painful moments - which is something I intend to do as a filmmaker - though I'm less "quirky" about my storytelling. This isn't a movie to watch with your parents, hopefully.
Using this as an example:
And that's not nearly the most disturbing moment of the film.
Happiness deals a lot with sexual repression, perversion, and sexual angst. It all builds to the perfect finish.