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Life on the Stage: Richard Linklater’s “Me and Orson Welles”

Life on the Stage: Richard Linklater's "Me and Orson Welles"

Like so many of Richard Linklater’s films, his latest, Me and Orson Welles, follows an ad hoc group working together towards an unlikely, and very impending, goal. In his winning School of Rock a bunch of children (and one mental child) aimed to play a great rock show. His pint-sized Bad News Bears struggled for dignity through sport and teamwork, crescendo achieved via the “big game.” In Me and Orson Welles, Linklater hops back to the 1930s to the debut of Orson Welles’s political staging of “Julius Caesar,” but despite this sophisticated material he still populates his movie with childish types (narcissistic theater actors, producers and designers), winding them up and letting them go. The filmmaker’s Before Sunrise / Sunset diptych may be considered his archetypal works, but in focusing on just two characters they’re atypical: few American filmmakers are as fully invested in teasing out the character of communities, and his films are always full of well-balanced personages. Click here to read the rest of Jeff Reichert’s review of Me and Orson Welles.

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