It sounded interesting enough. "Storytelling," an independent film starring Selma Blair and John Goodman involving two separate stories, "Fiction" and "Non-fiction," was supposed to be pretty good. However, all good things aside, it is a pointless, boring waste of time.
The first twenty-five minutes of "Storytelling" is the fiction element. This story features Selma Blair as a college student in a writing class who has just broken up with her crippled boyfriend and is trying to excel as a writer. She is strangely attracted to her quiet, powerful writing professor, and they engage in a vicious night of sex. Though it happened, no one believes her.
The second story, "Non-fiction," takes up the rest of the movie, and it isn't interesting in the least. A high school student is pressured into applying to college, even though he would rather just sit around, get high, and become a television talk show host someday. His family is pretty straight-laced and not-at-all too happy with his behavior. Things become more interesting as a documentary filmmaker begins making a movie about him and teenagers in general; in essence, what is put on screen is apparently non-fiction, but in reality, it is anything but.
The concept is well-intentioned, the acting is terrific, and let's face it - the sex scenes with Selma Blair are fun - but the rest of the movie is just drab. So what if it shows a non-fiction story that everyone believes is fiction, and then a story that is fictional but everyone believes is non-fictional? The stories still have to be interesting. There has to be something else to tie them together, something to make the audience feel as though they didn't waste 85 minutes of their day.
I felt that way. "Storytelling" is well done except that it has nothing going for it, and in the end, that's everything. How's that for irony?
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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