Friday, July 02, 2004

Video: The Station Agent (2003)

This movie is the one of those indie success stories that I managed to miss in theatrical release. I was pretty sure that I’d like it. And I did. I was equally sure that it would play just as well on video. And it does.

I enjoyed hanging out with these characters as they hung out with each other. Which is essentially all that happens in the movie, so casting is critical. Writer/director Tom McCarthy comes up with a near-perfect mix. He’s created a role for Peter Dinklage that taps into the steely star power the actor displayed in LIVING IN OBLIVION. (“Have you ever had a dream with a dwarf in it? ... I don’t even have dreams with dwarves in them!”) And Bobby Cannavale is a real discovery.

But questions kept bubbling up that prevented me from going with the movie completely. Don’t these people have to work? How come I can’t attract a gang of lively misfits and while away my days walking the railroad right of way in one of the quainter patches of New Jersey? Does God hate me?

It probably says something about me that these issues came up. Or maybe it says something about the movie. I finally made my peace with the fact that this is the indie-film version of time porn. Like FRIENDS, only quirkier. And you don’t have to watch it every week.