MACARTHUR PARK: The Best Film of 2001 noone saw!
Magnolia 12883 | Oregon City, OR USA | 06/21/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I saw this at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival for my birthday. It was there along with Grand Prize winner "The Believer" (the first film I saw), "Scotland, PA" and "Julie Johnson" (a still to be released small masterpiece with Lili Taylor and Courtney Love - yes, that courtney love - in a tale of self-discovery, redirection and newly born lesbianism). But Billy Wirth's "MacArthur Park" has an amazing ensemble led by underrated and underused Thomas Jefferson Byrd (good cineasts will recognize him from several Spike Lee joints, such as "Clockers", "Get on the Bus", "He Got Game" and his best role yet, prior to this film, in the overlooked and oft-misunderstood "Bamboozled").It also has ex SNL alum Ellen Cleghorn (of WB sitcom fame), Lori Petty, Balthazar Getty (from Lynch's "Lost Highway"), and others.The story is a disturbing but documentary like account of 48 hours in the life of homeless drug addicts and dealers and the people who float in and out of their orbit in LA's MacArthur Park.It's an exhilirating, powerful and astonishing directorial debut that began as a documentary and took on actors to dramatize director-writer-actor Wirth's notes, fleshing out reality into a more palatable format (if you like your harsh truths and gritty reality in glossy, well-made fiction form).Either way you take it, "MacArthur Park" is a diamond in the rough, an overlooked gem which is NOT TO BE MISSED!!!"
Billy Wirth's Unflinching Look Inside MacArthur Park
flame35 | Santa Fe, NM United States | 05/18/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I saw this film in April 2001 after waiting over two years for it to get made. On May 18th 2004 the DVD is available for the public and fans to enjoy.Billy Wirth gives an unflinching look at the underside of life. As a take it or leave it Hip Hop - Rap fan, I was blown away by the soundtrack. I felt the music blended and pulled the movie together, it set the pace and took the viewer on a roller coaster ride.The ensemble cast was extraordinary, I was truly amazed to see the performances that Billy got the cast to reveal. It is an intense film and subject matter but with a sense of family, for not giving up on family, or yourself. To see pass the weaknesses that we all share, that with love and faith in each other you can triumph.The performances of Thomas Jefferson Byrd, Carlton Wilborn, Keno Deary, Ellen Cleghorn were special to me. I look forward to more work from these gifted actors.I also feel the movie forces the viewer to look inside themselves, to experience another world that many of us don't know and refuse to see. The addict, the homeless, they could all be us. That they do have faces, names, families and souls."
The most riveting,gritty movie of 2001!
Cindy Mahoney | Brunswick, Georgia United States | 07/13/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"At least in my opinion. I saw this amazing film in November of 2001 at the St.Louis Film Festival with 2 friends that ran a fan group for Billy at the time. We saw the movie on Friday evening and the next afternoon and I have to say that it was just as facinating both days. I couldn't take my eyes off the screen for a second. Billy did an outstanding job for this being his debut as director. I highly recommend this movie, I think it's worth every cent, though it can be hard to watch at times."