“It’s funny how a single day could drag and drag while entire years just flew by in a flash.”
A couple of near-strangers in the Miami area become accidental fugitives. This fits right in with the 1990’s American indie scene, played Sundance with Clerks and Hoop Dreams and Spanking the Monkey. Then Kelly’s next feature, the very different Old Joy (which I thought was her debut until recently) came twelve years later and River of Grass wouldn’t resurface until a nice restoration this year.
Cozy has a husband and a kid or two, is restless. At a bar she meets Lee (Larry Fessenden), who has just received a gun found by his friend Michael “brother of Steve” Buscemi, which was lost by Cozy’s dad, a detective. They wander the neighborhood and shoot a homeowner who surprises them, then go on the run with no money or plan, never successfully leaving their home county. When Cozy finds out they’re not fugitives after all, having missed the homeowner, she shoots Lee and disappears in his car.
“If we weren’t killers we weren’t anything.”
Besides Fessenden, Kelly had worked with Todd Haynes, thanks Ira Sachs in the credits, has a walk-on role for Phil Morrison, and musical participation by Ira Kaplan, Dave Schramm and Amy Rigby – that’s a mighty list of friends and collaborators. Really nice blu-ray, with a commentary where Reichardt and Fessenden lightly mock the film and each other. “Look, another iconic shot. This really defines American cinema.”
Also rewatched Reichardt’s next two features, in prep for Certain Women:
Old Joy (2006)
I didn’t have much to say about this last time, and still don’t. Now I’ve read the Jon Raymond short story, and the movie is a very close adaptation – except for one thing. The book has an aside about a dead deer being loaded into the back seat of a borrowed car, then the deer turning out not to be dead, waking up and destroying the car. I could swear I’ve heard that story before – but where? I still find the movie to be more positive and peaceful than the story would suggest. Seen Daniel London in a couple things since this – notably The Toe Tactic – and I’ve bought a bunch more albums by Bonnie Bill Oldham.
Wendy and Lucy (2008)
I kinda like my writeup from last time. Biggest surprise of the night: Lucy the dog (Palm Dog winner at Cannes) also costars in Old Joy. This movie gives me panic attacks and makes me super sad at the end, and I love it to death. Kelly adds a couple true details that weren’t in the original story, like the police not knowing how their own computer systems work. Security guard Wally Dalton was in The Catechism Cataclysm – funny that I didn’t mention him in my post but I did mention Old Joy.