Meewella | Critic

According to P

Tag: Jonathan Sadoff

QuickView: The Peanut Butter Falcon (2019)

“I can’t be a hero because I am a Down’s syndrome.”


This delightful adventure-on-the-run is a modern spin on classic American fiction like Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, notable for starring an actor with Down’s syndrome rather than resorting to caricature. Zack Gottsagen’s performance feels natural, the actor being both self-effacing and determined in his portrayal of a sheltered youth desperate to experience the world for himself. The striking geography of North Carolina’s coastal plain provides a grand backdrop to this journey of self-discovery. Shia LaBeouf is the ideal wilderness companion, rough and yet innately sensitive to the fact that Zak requires freedom from his constrained existence in order to develop and flourish. Sweet without being saccharine, The Peanut Butter Falcon walks the perfect line for a feelgood movie, undermined only by its abrupt ending.


QuickView: Ingrid Goes West (2017)

Ingrid Goes West poster

“I’m not a psychopath or anything, I just want to be her friend.”

Ingrid Thorburn

Aubrey Plaza and Elizabeth Olsen’s off-screen relationship is adorable, but veers into unsettling territory in Matt Spicer’s directorial debut, a dark satire on the artificial world of Instagram influencers and the damaging effects of misused social media. Plaza, somewhat incredibly, manages to draw audience sympathy for an unstable young woman who forms dangerously unhealthy obsessions with individuals. Several images early on strike a chord, like Ingrid continuing to scroll through Instagram whilst weeping and her mundane morning routine of repetitive like-swipe-liking. Spicer understands his subject and recognises the intimacy within the artifice of Instagram. However, Ingrid Goes West loses its way in the latter half and has little to say before reaching a nebulous conclusion that conflates the film’s call for authenticity with viral popularity.


"A film is a petrified fountain of thought."

(CC) BY-NC 2003-2023 Priyan Meewella

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