Joel Thomas Hynes (left) and Mylene Savoie could put you to sleep.
DOWN TO THE DIRT (Justin Simms). 115 minutes. Opens Friday (December 5). For venues and times, see Movies. Rating: N
Plenty of movies confuse filth for authenticity: think of all those half-baked adaptations of Charles Bukowski's prose and poetry shovelling grubby production design in our faces in an attempt to keep it real.
Justin Simms and Joel Thomas Hynes, respectively the director/co-writer and inspiration/star of Down To The Dirt, have certainly studied those films and like them present posturing as artistry and misery as mythology.
Hynes's character, Keith Kavanagh, is apparently a version of himself; the screenplay is adapted from his autobiographical novel. But his idealized alter ego is an insufferable Bukowski wannabe, and you won't want to spend 10 minutes in his company, let alone nearly two hours.
Oh, the movie wails, Keith may be a self-destructive Newfoundlander who destroys everything he touches - especially the prospects, possessions and pets of his long-suffering girlfriend, Natasha (Mylene Savoie) - but he totally deserves our sympathy because he has a poet's soul. He carries around a notebook! He writes his free verse in longhand and never once crosses out a mistake or changes his mind in mid-flow! He, like, radiates integrity and shit!
Hynes deserves serious props for convincing someone to turn his life into a movie. But that's salesmanship, not artistry.