Two more movies last Thursday.
First up, the high school comedy TIM TIMMERMAN, HOPE OF AMERICA. Tim Timmerman is a young politician. Senior class President, he has some slick people skills, but doesn't really apply himself. He's basically coasting by on his charisma and taking advantage of everyone. And he's really only doing this to pad out his resume and get into Yale--even though with his grades he doesn't have much of a chance. When he's given an opportunity to collaborate with the senior class President of a rival school, he blows her off, until he realizes her father is a senator who could help his career. But in the course of taking advantage of her (not that way, you perv) he actually starts falling for her. He's not such a bad guy, it's just his natural people skills have made life pretty easy for him, until someone finally challenges him. This is the kind of movie that could have been really trite and unappealing, but the performances were great, the script has a few unexpected turns, and Tim is, in the end, a likable enough guy that you root for him (especially because his main rivals are much, much worse.)
And then the documentary FINDING JOSEPH I. I hadn't known anything about the band BAD BRAINS or their lead singer HR before. A hardcore punk rocker, then a reggae singer and a preacher of peace an love. And an eccentric. And a little unhinged. And, as it turns out, pretty definitely schizophrenic. Using archival footage and interviews with friends, colleagues, and HR himself, we get an intimate view of his gifts and his curse. His amazing performances and his unpredictable behavior. His successes and his struggles--including many years homeless. You feel for the guy, and for the people who suffered his erratic behavior. And (spoiler alert!) you can cheer when he finally is diagnosed, gets medication, and sticks to it.
Total Running Time: 184 minutes
My Total Minutes: 417,801