From Todd Solondz, the critically acclaimed director of Welcome to the Dollhouse comes a film comprised of two separate stories set against the sadly comical terrain of college and high school, past and present. Following the paths of its young hopeful/troubled characters, it explores issues of sex, race, celebrity and exploitation.
Todd Solondz, director of the acclaimed Welcome to the Dollhouse
and the controversial Happiness
, continues pushing the envelope of social decorum with the merciless and casually cruel Storytelling
, his most ruthless satire of suburban complacency. Broken into two unrelated chapters, "Fiction" follows college girl Selma Blair through a degrading encounter with her resentful writing teacher (Robert Wisdom), while the more sprawling and scattershot "Non-Fiction" circles around the mutual exploitation of a fumbling documentary filmmaker (Paul Giamatti doing a near-parody of director Solondz) and his clueless subject, a suburban high school slacker named Scooby (Mark Webber). The squirmy laughs are laced with humiliation and the satire is acidic and cynical; in the world of Solondz, victims and victimizers alike are petty, selfish, vindictive, and thoughtless, and empathy is strictly rationed. Though sharply written and well directed, this misanthropic vision is strictly for daring filmgoers and Solondz fans. --Sean Axmaker