zaterdag 23 april 2016
Today's Review: Bezness as Usual
Another review up at FilmTotaal, with one more to follow in the same week:
Bezness as Usual - recensie
This is the type of documentary you don't go to the movies for. The type you expect to see on public access late at night. The kind of topic that doesn't really attract you unless you already experience a personal stake in it. For its own type, it's not bad per se, it just lacks the necessary angle for which it would be a boon to theater audiences on other occasions than festival screenings. That's nothing to be held against it, it's just the way it is. The main actual argument against it is it introduces a despicable man whose shenanigans we have to watch for a good ninety minutes. A man who we can't judge as anything but unsympathetic from the get-go, but who the protagonist feels the need to discover if there's other sides to him that justify his behavior, past and present.
Big surprise: not really, he's just an old con man trying to use his son as a business angle rather than feeling true fatherly emotions for. A hard truth to swallow, but one we saw coming miles away, which makes for little emotional intensity. Considering this movie is basically self-therapy for the director, a child of different ethnicities torn between loyalties to people on two continents, it succeeds in making the protagonist reach a new understanding, but the same doesn't hold true for the audience. At the same time, we get a glimpse of far larger events unfolding in Tunisia, as the threat of terrorism grows ever stronger, but this subject is only slightly touched upon. Bezness as Usual is a small scale drama unfolding between two people, anything beyond that, however intriguing, is not the point. Too bad, since it might have made for a more dynamic and less predictable documentary. The type you would want to see on the big screen.