Minimalist in plot, comic in tone, and anarchic in spirit, the film has less heritage with the experimental cinema of Jacobs’ father (avant-garde pioneer Ken Jacobs) and more connection to the love triangles of French luminaries like Godard, Truffaut and Vigo. (One of the film’s highlights is a scene where Jacobs pays tribute to Pere Jules’ show-and-tell in L’Atalante.)
The GoodTimesKid, though, is more than the sum of its influences. Jacobs gets memorable performances out of his two leads, and acquits himself nicely in a supporting role. The cinematography (shot with 35mm film, the production notes tell me, taken from a “Hollywood blockbuster”) has a warm, intentionally unfocused languor that suits its characters.
Its ending prevents the film from being an out-and-out “feel good” movie, but there is some truth in advertising here. The GoodTimesKid is a good time.
Azazel Jacobs’ The GoodTimesKid screens alongside Two Wrenching Departures, the new feature by his father, Ken Jacobs, from Wednesday, January 17 – Tuesday, January 23. Check Anthology Film Archives for screening times.