Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Losers Are Cool

Saw a dour, downbeat double bill yesterday about losers. Maggie Gyllenhall (never better) is terrific in "Sherrybaby," the tale of none-too-bright woman just out of jail who struggles -- not to do the right thing, but merely -- if possible -- to not do the wrong thing too often or too frequently to screw things up. Maggie is great here and one tiny little devastating bit of information opens up our hearts to her without ever being exploited or used to "explain" her behavior. Then I saw Matt Dillon in "Factotum," a film based on the work of Bukowski -- Dillon has great fun playing this shaggy dog of a fellow, who almost never holds down a job for more than a day or two. Bleakly amusing, just like "Barfly" without being quite so depressing as that miserable tale. Two standout performances.

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