We finally rented Unknown White Male
, which I've been meaning to see at least since I read about Doug Bruce
in the New Yorker a ways back
Obviously, I can't speak with any authority about the controversy
surrounding the film's veracity, although I will say that a very strong air of fakiness is wafting from the entire thing. No, my problems aren't about whether the movie is true or false, it's that the movie is just bad
; it's clichéd and repetitive and chronologically confused and incredibly self-important. Worse, presumably because of the close friendship between the director and his subject, it never gets the critical distance necessary to actually evaluate the nature of Bruce's condition.
And it's fake, too. Let's just be honest with ourselves about that. Whatever condition Doug Bruce actually has, it's been lost to the symptoms he is now enacting, whether that deception is deliberate or unconscious. Bruce plainly wants his story to be the inspiring (and highly commercial) story of a cynical man who suddenly sees the world through the idealism of a child, and he began working that angle from almost the very start of his situation. Maybe he's just forgotten the first million times they made that film.