Black and White

Bomb Rating: 

James Toback is to independent cinema what Gilbert Gottfried is to comedy.

I saw this film back in September of 1999 at the Telluride Film Festival, and anybody who thinks I'm going to sit through it again just so I can come up with a few extra zingers can lick the sweat off my nubby purple ass.

James Toback is to independent cinema what Gilbert Gottfried is to comedy. The writer/director was at this particular screening himself, and got up before an audience of about 900 people to, more or less, say the following: "I really like coming to Telluride because I know the audiences here know quality from crap." What a set-up. I knew right there the film was going to be one huge, steaming, corn-laced dropping. Whoever keeps inviting that hack back to Telluride needs to be beaten.

I happened to be attending the film with friends, and the entire way through -- at least until I walked out -- we were all writhing in pain. Toback mixes actors with real people. So Robert Downey, Jr. is supposed to be a gay guy talking to the real Mike Tyson. Brooke Shields is supposed to be making a documentary film as the fictional Sam Donager, while Ben Stiller is a DEA agent putting the sting on Dean (Allan Houston).

Perhaps all that prison time is making him more amenable to it, but I could not be more sick of Robert Downey, Jr. playing homosexuals. I guess Toback also had the gall to introduce this film in Toronto by criticizing law enforcement for throwing Downey in jail for "getting high." If you have that much money and can't get things straight after who knows how many chances, you deserve to be in jail. And Brooke Shields as a documentary filmmaker? If I remember, she has dreds in this film. Why not just give her a third eye? The whole endeavor was a pretentious joke and is notable only for being the only film I've ever walked out of at Telluride -- along with a whole bunch of other people.

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