There was a time when Hal Hartley was the king of the indie film world. Coming straight out of Long Island and SUNY Purchase, he laid the ground work for Wes Anderson and mumble core, but not as occasionally precious or inaudible. I found him via “Trust” on the BBC during my JYA in London. His films introduced me to two of my favorite actors- Robert John Burke and Martin Donovan. I lost track of him after 1997’s great “Henry Fool”, but I’m definitely taking the time to catch up on his stuff, and I hope you do.
Ironically enough, an actress in the program I was in in London appeared in this movie.. “Amateur.”
Essentially, “Amateur” is the story of several people tied up in a mix of sex and violence- an amnesiac pornographer, a nymphomaniac nun- and while not particularly violent or explicitly sexual, it’s a great study of characters. Parker Posey, back when she was a blossoming Indy Queen makes an appearance, as does French actress Isabelle Huppert as said nun. Oh, and look out Adria Tennor- who plays a very upset, young boy. She was the acquaintance from London. You’ve seen her in stuff. Glad she’s done well.
See the movie. No more plot points here.
As for the, OST.. oh god, so good. Great indy tracks by bands like Yo La Tengo, Bettie Serveert and My Bloody Valentine ( I’M DOWN WITH MBV, YEAH YOU KNOW ME!!!.) Plus, the instrumental cues by Jeffery Taylor & Ned Rifle are great in and of them selves. Further review made clear, FIVE STARS ALL THE WAY!! You absolutely need this in your collection. It works as a great OST, a great snippet of music in the mid-90’s, and a reminder of Hal Hartley’s place in indie culture’s rise.
Picking best songs are also really hard. The trailer features P.J. Harvey’s ‘Water,’ but I’m posting a video for My Bloody Valentine’s “Only Shallow.” My Bloody Valentine, like Hartley, are a band of such impact and influence, yet not as big a name as they should be.
I’m also including “Tom Boy” because I dare you not to close your eyes and lose your self in Bettie Serveert’s cool guitar pop.
Date Listened in Tour: 7/28/08
Best Songs: “Only Shallow”, “Tom Boy”
Grand Tour Drinking Game Score: 1 – OST. Although have a nice whiskey or sipping drink at hand to drink throughout the whole cd or watching the movie.