Review: ‘Blind Spot’

There's nothing to see in "Blind Spot," narratively sluggish and ultimately incoherent feature from indie hyphenate Stefan Woloszczuk. Theatrical possibilities are nil, though presence of young thesp James Franco ("Freaks and Geeks," TNT's "James Dean: An Invented Life") might generate latenight cable slots and undiscriminating video action.

There’s nothing to see in “Blind Spot,” narratively sluggish and ultimately incoherent vanity feature from indie hyphenate Stefan Woloszczuk. Theatrical possibilities are nil, though presence of young thesp James Franco (“Freaks and Geeks,” TNT’s “James Dean: An Invented Life”) might generate latenight cable slots and undiscriminating video action.

After five schools in three years, aimless 17-year-old Danny Alton (Franco) becomes sucked into some sort of sinister road trip from Los Angeles to San Francisco, via Death Valley, involving former lover April (Shawn Montgomery), ex-con Wayne (Mark Gleason), the supposedly ruthless Bellini crime family and a mysterious suitcase. Woloszczuk seems to be interested in fusing the world-weary aesthetic of hard-boiled fiction to a kind of Lynchian paranoid weirdness, but the mixture of such visual frissons as photo collages with ubiquitous, heavy-handed narration by Franco (including such unintentional howlers as “My life took a turn in ways I couldn’t possibly have imagined,” and the old standby “Sometimes you just gotta see where it goes”) just doesn’t work. Tech credits are OK, with hints of production discord suggested by closing credit to “art directors, week one through three.”

Blind Spot

Production

A Public Pictures production. Produced, directed, written, edited by Stefan Woloszczuk.

Crew

Camera (color), Maximo Munzi; music, Gary Lionelli. Reviewed at Montreal Film Festival (Cinema of Tomorrow: New Trends), Sept. 1, 2001. Running time: 91 MIN.

With

James Franco, Shawn Montgomery, Mark Gleason, Albert J. Harris, Morgan Margolis, Ike Gingrich.
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