‘Boyhood’ earned Richard Linklater the right to be taken seriously, once and for all. For more than two decades, the Texan filmmaker had shifted between directing critically acclaimed personal projects (‘Before Sunrise’, ‘Waking Life’) and mainstream movies both successful (‘The School of Rock’) and less so (‘Fast Food Nation’). An extraordinary 12-year odyssey, ‘Boyhood’ didn’t win a Best Picture Oscar (it was robbed by ‘Birdman’) but it was universally adored, topping many critics’ best-of-2014 lists.
A reverent documentary tracking Linklater’s journey from DIY upstart to A-list director couldn’t be far behind – and here it is. Directed and presented by Austin Chronicle editor and South by Southwest festival founder Louis Black – a fan and presumably a friend of his subject’s – ‘Dream Is Destiny’ is an affable, detail-light trundle through Linklater’s career. The best moments come early on, with goofy 8mm footage of Linklater and friends shooting his homemade debut ‘Slacker’ in the Austin suburbs. From there, it’s the usual blend of film clips, TV snippets and interviews with Linklater and famous collaborators (Ethan Hawke, Kevin Smith). If die-hard Linklater fans actually exist, they’ll be in heaven. For the rest of us, this is fine but forgettable.