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Auto Focus


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Saw this in a bit of a movie watching spree I had today. It's been a bit hyped up here and there, Auto Focus is about the life of Bob Crane, who played Hogan in "Hogans Heroes," the old TV comedy series about a German POW camp. Crane's life was ruled completely by sex. Whereas most hollywood stories have people fucking up their lives with drugs, Crane just fucked everything that movies, and caught it all on tape. A guy named John Carpenter (not the horror director) is a swinger that entices him into the lifestyle and provides him with the cameras. The movies centers on their relationship, with the terrible twosome getting more and more into the lifestyle and Crane's life goes to shit. We dont get much explanaiton for the way Crane acts, except that he thinks he's very normal. Being based on truth, I think the filmmakers were as confused as we are by the way Crane acted. He was either really shallow person, or a really complex and deep one, and I'd lean toward the first option.

 

Greg Kinnear plays Crane, and he does a fantastic job. It's hard to put a finger on the kind of quality he gievs to Crane. The movie describes it as "likeability." That's certainly one way of looking at it. Willem Dafoe plays Carpenter, and he's as weird and cool as usual. They make a hell of a team, and have a very strange chemistry that composes most of the movie.

 

The way it was shot is cool too. It's pretty normal in the beginning, a bit bright actually, vivid colors and all that, then as Crane's life disintegrates, so does the image quality. By the end it's grainy and dark, with mostly handheld and moving shots. So, I liked it. Another cool one to add to the list of fine movies in theaters now. It's a good look at an apparently very simple man who has very simple needs.

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