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Waiting for Hockney

  • Film

Time Out says

**** (Four stars)
There were many points during this movie that made me yell, “What the fuck?” In the theater, you might want to refrain from such outbursts, but you will no doubt be thinking the same thing. Here's what you'll be reacting to: Billy Pappas, a thirtysomething Baltimore guy, lives with his parents, becomes acquainted with an extravagant and bafflingly strange art patron and spends the next eight years creating a single pencil drawing. Of Marilyn Monroe. The only thing more confounding than this bad decision is why he then decides to hang all hope of personal and professional success on David Hockney, an art-world figure whom Pappas spends half the film trying to meet. But what originally looks like dumb obsession starts to seem more like admirable heroism as Pappas’s strange band of supporters—both real and imagined—abandons him. He continues his quest, never regretful and never discouraged. First-time director Julie Checkoway's job is made relatively easy by Pappas and his naturally compelling story. Given that Checkoway is a former producer for NPR and This American Life, though, I would’ve expected better music choices. Instead, we get achy singer-songwriter ballads playing over corny montages. What the fuck?—Billie Cohen, deputy editor

[This is a TONY staff review, written for the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival. It is not considered an official review and should not be read as such. Please think of it as a casual impression from a movie-loving friend.] 

Cast and crew

  • Director:Julie Checkoway
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