Alan Zweig (Canada, Focus on Alan Zweig)
Sunday, May 1, 6 p.m.
Alan Zweig continues the barely disguised autobiographical project he began with Vinyl and I, Curmudgeon with 2007’s Lovable. Like Vinyl but without all the records to clutter it up, Lovable pokes and prods at the reasons for loneliness and the absence of romantic life.
Zweig presses a handful of single ladies (ranging in age from twenty-something to near-menopausal) about the reasons for their solitude. Some are willingly romantic exiles. Others, not so much. Many express their desire to find a romantic partner, while others gripe about the contempt they have for the happily married and otherwise coupled. These interviews are inter-cut with Zweig’s trademark “mirror-shots,” in which he plunges deep in the abyss of his own loneliness. In these deeply personal interludes, Zweig may talk about the fantasy romances he cooks up in his head when an attractive woman passes him on the street, or go through a nip/tuck tutorial of how he’d like to alter his physical appearance.
Like all of Zweig’s films, Lovable proves emotionally candid, but it’s baldfaced openness stokes a kind of reverse-narcissism. Though characteristically frank, Zweig here seems not without guile. All the honesty and artlessness seems too self-conscious, and Zweig’s self-mythologizing sad-sack persona has never seemed quite so pronounced. Still, as an answer to the question of what becomes of the brokenhearted, Lovable (like much of Zweig’s work) oscillates solemnly between the bitterly funny and the deeply sad.