Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Jason Segel Takes On David Foster Wallace in Controversial 'End of the Tour' (VIDEO) Jason Segel Takes On David Foster Wallace in Controversial 'End of the Tour' (VIDEO) Troubled Western 'Jane Got a Gun' Rescued as Relativity Files for Bankruptcy (Updated) Troubled Western 'Jane Got a Gun' Rescued as Relativity Files for Bankruptcy (Updated) Read Martin Scorsese's Column on His Favorite Hollywood Leading Ladies Read Martin Scorsese's Column on His Favorite Hollywood Leading Ladies A Woman in Charge: Warner Bros. Names Sue Kroll Head of Global Distribution A Woman in Charge: Warner Bros. Names Sue Kroll Head of Global Distribution 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film Charles Aidikoff Screening Room Shutters: End of an Era for LA Critics? Charles Aidikoff Screening Room Shutters: End of an Era for LA Critics? How HBO's 'Ballers' Fails Sports Fans How HBO's 'Ballers' Fails Sports Fans Michael Moore Reveals Stealth NSA Project 'Where to Invade Next' on Periscope Michael Moore Reveals Stealth NSA Project 'Where to Invade Next' on Periscope Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Richard Linklater's Untitled New Film Pushed to 2016, Might Direct Jennifer Lawrence Movie Richard Linklater's Untitled New Film Pushed to 2016, Might Direct Jennifer Lawrence Movie Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers 'Steve Jobs' Joins Fall Festival Contenders as NYFF Centerpiece Gala: What's Coming Up and What's Not (UPDATED) 'Steve Jobs' Joins Fall Festival Contenders as NYFF Centerpiece Gala: What's Coming Up and What's Not (UPDATED) Top 10 Takeaways: Holdover 'Ant-Man' Tops Blah Week, Summer Slot for 'Southpaw' Pays Off Top 10 Takeaways: Holdover 'Ant-Man' Tops Blah Week, Summer Slot for 'Southpaw' Pays Off Arthouse Audit: Is 'Phoenix' This Year's 'Ida'? 'Mr. Holmes' Stays Strong Arthouse Audit: Is 'Phoenix' This Year's 'Ida'? 'Mr. Holmes' Stays Strong Friday Box Office: Sandler's 'Pixels' Gets Mixed Response, 'Paper Towns,' 'Southpaw' Not Far Behind Friday Box Office: Sandler's 'Pixels' Gets Mixed Response, 'Paper Towns,' 'Southpaw' Not Far Behind Congrats to Monica Bellucci: She's Making History Congrats to Monica Bellucci: She's Making History Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Gabriel García Márquez and Akira Kurosawa Talk Film, Writing and 'Rhapsody in August' in 1991 Gabriel García Márquez and Akira Kurosawa Talk Film, Writing and 'Rhapsody in August' in 1991

Tribeca Review: Shouted, Not Stirred: The Imperturbable James Franco

Thompson on Hollywood By David D'Arcy | Thompson on Hollywood April 25, 2012 at 3:05PM

James Franco is inescapable. The actor/writer/student/etc. is to movies what the recently deceased NY Met Gary Carter was to paid endorsements. He’s everywhere.
0
Francophenia

James Franco is inescapable. The actor/writer/student/director is to movies what the recently deceased NY Met Gary Carter was to paid endorsements. He’s everywhere.

The most recent sighting (and that could change at any moment) is "Francophrenia (or: Don’t Kill Me, I Know Where the Baby Is)" an experimental film by Franco and director Ian Olds that’s at the Tribeca Film Festival.

For his only appearance on the soap opera "General Hospital," Franco brought a film crew along, and the reconstitution of footage from that un-aired show tells a tale of a man overcome by paranoia.  It’s real paranoia – as opposed to the real dread of being trapped in a mountain crevice in "127 Hours."

Franco did shoot an episode of "General Hospital," which never aired. What better frisson to lure his daytime fans to a screening at Tribeca? But his marginal role in that episode has been expanded into a cocky entrance in a tuxedo, a few cryptic lines (some of them shouted), a tense ascent to a place of high profile, an act that becomes a crescendo, and lots of mystery around what any of this means.  If Franco weren’t already a student, he could be writing a PhD. thesis on his own movie.

Francophrenia has the over-the-shoulder look of many “making of” docs, and the sense of peering into something that the ordinary audience isn’t supposed to see – until a filmmaker puts it in front them. If you ever doubted that editing was at the core of filmmaking, you might not after seeing this experiment.

Sampling the Franco footage, and reconfiguring everything about the images, is a sleight of hand that can fool your emotions as much as it fools your eyes. Franco and Olds draw you in, even though you know the whole thing’s a game. No one said the man wasn’t seductive.  This caprice of a film, hard to release theatrically, will be a VOD success.
 

This article is related to: James Franco, James Franco, Francophrenia (or: Don't Kill Me, I Know Where the Baby Is), Documentary


E-Mail Updates








Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.