Humor is tragedy plus time – Mark Twain
In one of many Joaquin Phoenix’s epiphanies throughout, he questions, “Is it that the dream is unattainable or is that it’s just the wrong dream?” Only time will tell if this is the wrong mockumentary directed by Casey Affleck and is still humorous and entertaining in a year from now – or at least until the DVD release in a few months. Nevertheless, the movie chronicles the tumultuous life of two time Academy Award Nominee, Joaquin Phoenix, following his decision to abruptly retire from acting so as to stop being a high paid “fucking puppet” millionaire and express his true artistry in Hip Hop form, where all music is sampled and has produced nothing innovative in the last 25 years and counting, just as one can say for mockumentaries since This Is Spinal Tap.
Along this magical mystery tour (another misguided movie that went nowhere) is his seemingly dopey peon assistant, Antony Langdon, who gets shit on by Phoenix throughout the movie until he gets what you would call the last laugh. (But I wasn’t laughing, because like the rest of the movie seeing is not necessarily believing.) And P. Diddy, who Joaquin stalks to produce his album.
If only the media didn’t spill the beans two years ago, I might buy it. Which is sadly their defeat as they try to salvage the film and address accusations of this prank. Suddenly “They’re Going to Kill Us Productions” should be “Don’t Flatter Yourself Productions”. But I can’t say I wasn’t entertained by Phoenix’s Andy Kaufmanesque like performance art and his nomadic lifestyle with his free association musings and ramblings from the plight of bees to the entrapment of celebritydom, and hookers – everything but brother River Phoenix’s tragic death nor his other family members who are understandably absent including, maybe, even his father according to credits, who appears briefly, which is a dead giveaway for it being nothing but an elaborate and impressive hoax to stir the majority of the hungry gossiping public and media, like Roger Ebert. In his thumbs up review he empathizes with this tortuous soul but also says he will be seriously pissed if it turn out to be a hoax.
(“I’m a thief and I dig it!”)
So if their is sustaining humor to be found in this tragedy of his “lost years” than it would be that Casey Affleck is charged with sexually harassing the producer and DP and turns out to be the real lost cause and the one with the bad career move. If the filmmakers had any balls they would save that for the dvd outtakes. So will the real Phat Joaquin please stand up? Maybe he will in his upcoming movie “The Raven” or on Letterman this Friday.