FORTUNATE SON (Tony Asimakopoulos). 80 minutes. Some subtitles. Opens Friday (August 17). For venues and times, see Movies. Rating: NN
Tony Asimakopoulos, the Montreal-born son of Greek immigrants Aristomenis and Vassiliki, struggled with drug addiction in his youth before leaving town, getting clean and eventually returning home.
Fortunate Son is his personal documentary project, shot in the months before his marriage to fiancée Natalie Karneef and chronicling his bumpy relationships with her and his parents. But it lacks the narrative drive and dramatic focus that would make it an actual movie.
There are moments of genuine drama as escalating tensions and Aristomenis's declining health bring up old demons and challenge Tony's identity as a recovering addict. A family trip back to Greece identifies the problem: no matter how old we are, we all revert to our adolescent selves if forced to spend any length of time with our parents - and when Tony was a kid, he was using.
But that's all the insight we get. The footage just lumbers toward the wedding, with Tony reaching back to clips from his Scorsese-wannabe student films every time he needs to cover a transition. The aspirations to profundity are admirable, but Fortunate Son is really just a video diary that never finds its hook.