Fay Grim (R)
IMDb; Magnolia Pictures; Rotten Tomatoes; Wikipedia
streaming sites: Amazon; Google Play; iTunes; Vudu
This came out in 2007, I guess, but I didn't see it until 2014. It's a sequel to the 1997 film Henry Fool, which I think I watched in 2012. At the time, I wasn't wild about that movie, I just wanted to watch it so that I could watch this one. But after watching this, I became interested in rewatching the first movie... unfortunately, I now have no idea where my DVD of that movie is. I suppose it's not important, really. This movie is just so different from that one, I'd like to watch it knowing what I know now... but I find it really unlikely that the writer had any idea at the time he wrote that movie what was really going on, according to this one. So, whatever.
Anyway... at the end of the first movie, Henry has to flee the country. I don't remember much very clearly about the movie, but I remember him running to catch a plane. The end. In this movie, which is set seven years later, his wife, Fay Grim (Parker Posey), is raising their 14-year-old son, Ned, by herself. And she's worried he's going to turn out like his father. Also, Fay's brother, Simon (who had become a famous poet in the first movie with help from Henry), is in prison. Um... Simon's publisher, Angus James, suddenly becomes interested in publishing Henry's "Confession," which he had previously thought was very bad. But because of Henry's association with Simon (and his mysterious escape from the country), the public was now interested in Henry's work. Meanwhile, there's a CIA agent named Fulbright (Jeff Goldblum), who is interested in finding Henry's journals, which could contain coded information that would be dangerous to the U.S. government. So he recruits Fay to go to Paris and obtain two of those journals (out of a total of, I think like eight journals, maybe). In exchange, Fay forces Fulbright to arrange for Simon to be released from prison. While in Paris, Fay meets a woman named Bebe, who was once involved with Henry. The two of them end up going to Istanbul....
Okay, I really don't know what else to say. Except there are a bunch of different countries that want to get their hands on Henry's journals. And um, nothing in the movie makes much sense. It's all supremely redonkulous and confusing, in ways that kind of make me love the movie (but not really). For a lot of the movie, I kind of felt like the actors were deliberately acting badly... the way people talked just seemed kind of unnatural. But eventually, it became impossible for me to be sure about that, because the story just got crazier and crazier, so that at some point, the way everyone acted just seemed sort of normal to me, within the surreality of the movie. And Fay started seeming a lot smarter. And... man, I don't even know what to say. Except... eventually we do see Henry, and the way he talks is just the way he did in the first movie, except this time... I take him seriously. So that was definitely interesting. Yeah, the whole movie is really interesting. And insane. And awesome. Well, I'm not particularly happy about the way it ends... and it kind of leaves me wanting a third movie. Which may or may not ever happen, I don't know. And I guess now I really don't know what else to say....
Well, I feel like I should say that the first movie seems to have been more highly rated by critics than the sequel, while I rate the sequel higher. So, whatever.