Wednesday, January 18

review: "Me and You and Everyone We Know"

"Me and You and Everyone We Know" was, unexpectedly, one of my favorite movies of the last few months.

I don't want to give much away, but one of my favorite parts has an innocent six-year-old boy on an internet sex chat saying he wants to "poo back and forth" with the other person—and they think it's hot. It's as funny as the scene in "Closer" where an internet exchange leads to the doctor introducing himself as "The Sultan" to an unwitting photographer at the aquarium. But in "Everyone We Know," the situation is far more complex, with an unknown person at the other end of the chat, with massive misunderstanding between the two chatters, and the looming possibility of pedophila all rolled together.

This scene epitomizes the magic, quirky, scary confusion of life, which it seemed the filmmakers' main goal was to capture.

I suspected that one of the main characters, an awkward struggling artist prone to spontaneous offbeat imaginings that suck others into her world, was based on the movie's writer. It just seemed very autobiographical; the character was too quirky and too well realized to be anything else, I thought. It turns out the writer-director of the movie, Miranda July, played that part in the movie. It might not be autobiographical, but my guess is it.

In other Miranda July-related developments, the latest issues of McSweeney's Quarterly and The Believer each come with a DVD called "Wholpin" that has a very short film by July called "Are You Anybody's Favorite Person?" in which people answer that very question. It's worth watching, but don't go out of your way for it.


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