This is the story of Earl, a man with many problems and an alternate personality as Batman. Through sections of his wild life and imagination we get closer to the man and what makes him tick.
Ginnetta Correli's "Marty's House" from last year was a strange experience, but not one I was overly fascinated by. It did make me aware of this filmmaker and how different her vision is, so as I went into her older movie "The Earl Sessions" I was somewhat prepared to open my mind. What we're treated to is much more confusing, surreal and imaginary than it ever was in "Marty's House", but now I am certain that this cinéma vérité inspired nightmare of a style she has is one she is sticking to.
Earl (inspired by the lead actor Earl Woodruff I would assume) is a strange fellow. He's struggling with his other persona as Batman, while going through internal turmoil from losing his wife. As the title suggests, the movie is split into segments of Earl's life, and during these 74 minutes we're invited into many of his personal problems and fantasies.
It's a story filled with twisted visions and it's very openly ridiculous at times as well, which is a part of this style of filmmaking I usually have a problem with. Unless it's a style of comedy that really works for me, being all over the place and pushing the silliness hard rarely works for me when it comes to experimental/surreal pieces. Ginnetta Correli does have her own style that I think some will find extremely interesting though, and I think "The Earl Sessions" showed the style in a better light than "Marty's House" did.
Another thing that's frequent in independent films is this bright, oddly filtered style that I also see in Ginnetta Correli's movies. I might seem like a picky prick, and that's fine, but it's one more thing that I think interferes with the telling of a movie, as things often melt together in the whiteness. The ISO levels are just fucked, but for some reason there are filmmakers who prefers this look. In the case of "The Earl Sessions" and the likes, I think having the entire movie in this style makes it more confusing than it has to be, and just annoying on the eyes after a while.
Granted, after two reviews of Ginnetta Correli's work you can tell that I'm not her target audience. I do find her to be an interesting artist who follows her own path, and I believe her audience will be growing steadily if people find her work. Her voice is very clear through her movies. "The Earl Sessions" was a lot more interesting, although it's harder to follow, than "Marty's House" and it would be a great place to start with her work (not only because it was the first of her films). It plays like an art piece of a maniac, ranging from surreal horror to ridiculous, childish comedy. It fills your face with blood, boobies, pastries and stock footage. Despite not being a fan so far I am interested in Ginnetta Correli's "The Beauty Strip" because I'm intrigued by her as a true underground filmmaker.