- Not Rated
- 86 mins
- I rated 5 stars (Loved It)
Obviously I heard all about this film when it was rumored Banksy was supposed to go to the Oscars incognito, but it wasn't until a week ago when a friend of mine really explained who Banksy was that I decided to see it. I don't know much about street art, but I'm becoming interested.
It's a ruse! The film is really about a crazed French filmmaker, and part-time husband/father, Thierry Guetta. Guetta owned a vintage clothing shop in LA, but grew bored of adulthood.
On a trip home to France, Thierry asks to film a family member while he stealthily puts up his mosaics depicting characters from the Space Invaders game. Guetta is hooked.
Space Invader greases the wheels and asks Shepard Fairly (of OBEY fame) if Guetta can join him on his guerrilla campaign to document it.
Soon Guetta's children become fatherless, his wife a spinster; he's out nearly every night, and spending untold sums on film and camera equipment. After meeting nearly all of the biggest names in the underground street art world, there's only one left to film.
The call from Banksy came one LA afternoon. So Thierry drops everything and broke untold traffic laws on his way to meet him. Remember that all of this is going on under the guise of a documentary.
Thierry films a bunch of Banksy stuff, and Banksy grows to trust the wily Frenchman. Eventually Banksy asks Guetta when the documentary will be finished, and Thierry has to deliver. It becomes apparent that Guetta has no clue what he's doing, so Banksy being an actual artist, turns the table and makes a documentary about Thierry.
This is the final straw for Thierry's sanity. He throws his family on the proverbial ice-flow, and starts planning his own art show. He found the biggest space available, hired a gaggle of real artists and fabricators to produce his art. All of that, coupled with absurd amounts of hype and you get Mr. Brainwash.
Banksy is a talented man; not only is he the preeminent street artist, but he's a world-class troll. It's amazing what you can accomplish being untalented with eternal optimism and drive. Shepard Fairly is not amused.