Saturday, June 01, 2002

CQ (IMDB) (Netflix)
In the Francis Ford Coppola family, everyone makes movies, and CQ is son Roman's first theatrical film as director. It's a meta-movie, set in late '60s Paris, with Jeremy Davies (the coward in Saving Private Ryan) as the editor of Barbarella-like sci-fi flick that's missing an ending, and Angela Lindvall as the leather-jumpsuited super spy. Davies is also making a pretentious, "honest" personal film about his life, and finds himself bouncing between art and commerce, and reality and movie reality. It doesn't help him that Lindvall, a supermodel-cum-actress, is almost perfect as the bimbosity-free sex kitten distraction, and that he becomes responsible for salvaging the film after the director gets fired by producer Giancarlo Giannini (you may not recognize the name, but he's been the premier Italian actor for four decades).

I went to this because I had just finished his dad's biography, liked the preview, and had sat next to Roman on a flight from Paris to Chicago a couple of years ago (probably while he was working on this movie). We didn't say a word to each beyond "hello" (he has that kind of face that doesn't invite conversation, and a famous person's way of not making eye contact). There are a host of themes running through the film (obsession about work, wanting an alter ego, the need for self-expression)--maybe too many, because none of them really stick emotionally, and Davies isn't able to get you to really care about his problems. For lovers of the filmmaking process and slightly campy bad-movie humor.