Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Shut Up Little Man! Review
Shut Up Little Man! An Audio Misadventure
A film you'd think to be about surly midgets is really about two old men who hated each other in apartment in San Francisco. I've been waiting a while to review this film since it came out in January and was part of Sundance. Shut Up Little Man! is a documentary on a underground and cult following of tapes about an angry redneck and gay men who shared a tiny apartment in San Francisco in the late 80's. These two old men, Peter (gay dude) and Ray (redneck) were almost a sitcom format show, a mismatched couple living together, bitterly drunk and cracking stupid insults. Two young men lived next door and recorded the cursing and hate. The tapes spread like cocaine through an art gallery at an opening show through America.
The film should have been 40 minutes instead of the hour and 30 it is. It repeats itself, over and over again about the same events and annoyingly enough the same audio of Peter and Ray. There's suppose to be hours of tapes, but they seem to use the same one in this film. The phrase "Cinéma vérité" is explained twenty times.
The film is more about the two guys who made the recording than Peter and Ray. That's the obvious problem is that these two don't have much substance as to why you shoud care about them, beyond the start of the film. Then at some point the film inverts on itself and goes on about attempted movie deals based on our duo of ill-tempered drunk men. I'd say say just find the audio recordings and call it a day. Your not going to learn anything from the film you can't just wiki online. I could care less about the different comic book writers commentary who made maybe one comic based on the audio recordings.
There's some great little special effects and recreations of scenes using actors an old footage to make the film stand out, but it's inabilty to stop repeating itself and go to something new or go to another audio clip kills it. It's ending isn't as pitiful as Grizzly Man where you don't get to see footage of the bear eating the guy, but you might turn it off before you get that far.
I had such high hopes for this film to make me laugh, but in the end I just got one big one from the words of Tony, the third roommate, whose happy over someone's death.