Any Flow to the Film is Broken

Alonzo Mosley (also available at on I, Curmudgeon directed by Alan Zweig, screened at the Jacksonville Film Festival:“I actually had really high hopes for this one, but it all kind of fell flat for me. I think one of the biggest mistakes of the film is that there are never any subtitles to indicate who the person is being interviewed. This may seem like a small thing, but any flow to the film is broken by the fact that we have no bearings with any of these people. I only recognized Comic book writer Harvey Pekar, former Kids in the Hall Scott Thompson, and Andy Rooney (who appears in exactly one clip compared to the multiples of all the others, and in that one only expresses bewilderment at what Zweig is trying to do here).”

I'm guessing that Zweig didn't address the audience after the showing of the film, as he did at the Vancouver International Film Festival. There he explained that he didn't want subtitles because he felt that what the people had to say was much more important than who they were.

Further commenting on the film: “So what we have is a roundtable of people bitching about their lives of bitching. Zweig does try to put some form to the work on occasion, such as his repeated question to several subjects about the "Emperor Has No Clothes" story, but it's not enough. There are amusing anecdotes and stories here (most memorable is one guy describing how he could start developing a positive outlook on life if it weren't for the existence of jetskis), but it's not enough to hold it together.”

Again missing the point: Zweig was trying to get across the idea that bitching about everything is a waste of time. He tells the story of he was entering the third act of his life having just spent the second act not enjoying it. Rather than comment any further, I direct readers to the links at the bottom of my review of the movie.


Hi there, Son of Erik. What's shakin? To answer your question, no, Zweig wasn't present at the screening. I would have loved to hear from him afterwords but, given that he gets depressed easily, Jacksonville is probably not the best place for him to visit. My major impression of the film after first seeing it was that there was no form to it (aside from small instances such as the repeated "Emperor has no Clothes" discussion I mentioned). In the end, it seemed to me that you could have dumped all those clips into a spinning bingo barrel, mixed em up and put them into a random order and the effect would have been the same. There was very little connection between segments and, though this might be OK for a short subject, tends to get tedious at two hours. I can see his point about excluding the subtitles, but subtitles would have gone a little ways to solving this problem. If his ultimate point was that bitching was a waste of time and a sorry way to spend one's life, it didn't come across by the end of the film. I'd be interested in wathing it again after having read these comments, though. Take care.