On Sunday, both the Daily News and The Times featured interviews with the king of the disaffected-youth-in-Portland movie: Gus Van Sant. His most recent contribution to the genre is Paranoid Park.
Gus Van Sant on filmmaking and ‘Paranoid Park’
Van Sant discusses his take on the Hollywood system, and how a low-budget helps him retain artistic control.
Popular theory has it that a hit independent film is a director’s ticket to the big-money Hollywood gravy train.
But filmmaker Gus Van Sant returns over and over to low-budget land. It’s the only way, he says, to make the movies he really wants to create.
Back in Portland, the Latest Outsider Has a Skateboard
Portland writer Blake Nelson, author of the book on which the film is based (Library | Powell’s), interviews Gus about the film and his inspirations.
Gus’ interesting take on Portland:
It’s not a big enough city that people really move to or move out of. It gets more cosmopolitan every decade. It’s still its own universe. It’s a frontier town. And even with an influx of people that have come from the outside, it still retains a small-town existence. Like Boise, Idaho, where the people that are there, they were born there, and they will die there.
You know…I really want to like Gus Van Sant films, but after the first few minutes, I completely lose interest. My favorite so far was Elephant but was disappointed by the anticlimactic ending. I admit, I will see Paranoid Park simply because I can’t seem to resist seeing his movies even though there is a high likelihood I won’t enjoy it.
Howdy VF – I particularly like Drugstore Cowboy and My Own Private Idaho (in both of which Portland looks fantastic), but I’ve had a harder time with his other films; they are all filmed beautifully, but yeah, they meander about and as a viewer it’s hard to stay focussed.