Paranoid Park (Seville, 2007) D: Gus Van Sant, w/ Gabe Nevins, Taylor Momsen. Rating: NNN; DVD package: n/a
Provided you're willing to let go of the dramatic conventions that demand rising action leading to a climax, Gus Van Sant's quiet study of a teen being crushed by guilt works well as a mood piece.
Sixteen-year-old Alex (Gabe Nevins), already quietly disturbed by his parents' pending divorce, starts hanging around the titular skateboard park. One night, he causes a death. He doesn't know what to do or who to tell.
Van Sant keeps us rigorously confined to Alex's point of view with an array of visual devices, well-chosen music and smooth pacing to produce a foggy feeling that bypasses both sympathy and judgment but leaves us wondering at the value of his final choice.