Fast, Cheap & Out of Control
Errol Morris's best film to date--a clear advance on Gates of Heaven, Vernon, Florida, The Thin Blue Line, and A Brief History of Time--alternates interviews with four unconnected individuals: a lion tamer, a topiary gardener, a mole-rat specialist, and a robot scientist. The result is more a poem than a documentary, made coherent by Morris's formal precision: he links found footage with the interviews, black and white with color, in a dreamlike continuity that invites the viewer to trace his or her own connections. It's not at all difficult to watch, as the premise might suggest; in fact it's beautiful as well as moving, an achievement of synthesis that announces Morris's arrival as a master. Music Box, Friday through Thursday, November 21 through 27. --Jonathan Rosenbaum
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): film still.