Comments on watching and making films.

Monday, September 20, 2010

DVD - The Good Times Kid

Azazel Jacobs has had the pleasure of growing up with one of the most well known and respected Avant-Garde filmmakers as his father, Ken Jacobs. Now, this is not to say that The Good Times Kid is a product of nepotism by any means, or that Jacobs had some sort of advantage because of who his father is. The younger Jacobs, though, was obviously paying attention to what his father was doing, picking up pointers on filmmaking from a technical and storytelling standpoint.

The Good Times Kid stars Gerard Naranjo as Rodolfo Cano, as well as starring Jacobs as Rodolfo Cano. We'll call them Cano 1 and Cano 2 (Naranjo and Jacobs). When Cano 1 receives a notice to report for duty to the US Army, he is, understandably confused. He never signed up for the Army, nor is there a draft, so, believing he is the only Rodolfo Cano, he goes to the Army offices to straighten things out, when he meets Cano 2. Cano 1 follows Cano 2 home, finding Cano 2's girlfriend has set up a birthday party for him, which he refuses to take part in, as he's leaving her. Cano 1 invites himself into the house, and meets Diaz (played by Sara Diaz), Cano 2's girlfriend, and strikes up a relationship with her, which leads him deeper down the hole of trying to find out who this other Rodolfo Cano is.

I have no idea if there was any script involved, it seems like scenes were a loose idea that the actor's improv'd their way through. The acting was solid, though, so I can't say it was bothersome to me in any way. The story was fairly simple, and it seems as though they just used whatever things they had available to them for sets, props, etc. Most of the time, these kinds of films don't come off that great. You pretty much know that everyone involved had big plans and no resources. This film, however, didn't let it show. Everything about it was authentic enough that, even when you could tell they were utilizing what was at hand, it didn't seem like a compromise. Jacobs, Naranjo, and Diaz really created a (very small) world that the viewer could inhabit and enjoy themselves in for an hour and a half.

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