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neumu
Saturday, October 25, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  Art School Confidential cinematronic
  director

Terry Zwigoff

cast

Max Minghella, Sophia Myles, John Malkovich, Anjelica Huston, Jim Broadbent, Ethan Suplee, Matt Keeslar, Joel Moore
year

2006

rating rating cinematronic
  An art school — typically, a font of youthful creativity, alienation and cultural subversion — is an ideal place for a reunion between director Terry Zwigoff and writer/illustrator Daniel Clowes. (They previously collaborated on "Ghost World," the slyly funny film of Clowes' acclaimed graphic novel about two cynical teenage girls.) Granted, it's a creative reunion, not a class reunion, and the art school is fictional, but the trappings seem pretty real. With their sarcastic "Art School Confidential," Zwigoff and Clowes deflate the pomposity of art students, their professors, and the gallery owners the artists court. Jerome (Max Minghella), perceived as a wimp and used as a whipping boy by bullies throughout public school, believes that his artistic talent will eventually bring him fame, fortune and a girlfriend, if his skills are properly directed. Graduating from high school, Jerome gets into Strathmore Institute, a New York City spawning ground for the sort of flavor-of-the-moment types coveted by the mavens in the trendy SoHo art scene. Alas, his teachers, such as self-serving Professor Sandiford (John Malkovich), mislead him; his fellow students deride him; a local patron (Steve Buscemi) and a dissolute, self-loathing painter (Jim Broadbent) dismiss him; and Audrey (Sophia Myles), the beautiful model he desires, appears to be more interested in his hunky, square-jawed class rival (Matt Keeslar). If that wasn't enough to derail Jerome as he seeks his muse and validation, a strangler stalks the campus. This lacks the poignancy at the heart of "Ghost World," and the sheer hilarity that propels Zwigoff's bawdy "Bad Santa." That said, Clowes' screenplay skewers his targets with sharp humor; the cast is beautifully in tune with his snarky tone; and Zwigoff has orchestrated the sort of clever, offbeat comedy that is becoming his signature.
cinematronic
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