Casey Affleck has finally shown his directorial debut. Entitled I’m Still Here, it chronicles a part of the life and times of his brother in-law Joaquin Phoenix according to the Associated Press. Many people are still wondering whether the entire film was a setup as Joaquin Phoenix has been seen doing unusual things such as staring silently into space, growing a full beard and mustache, and having erratic behavior on stage.
Affleck insists that the film is no hoax. Scenes include Phoenix, the Oscar-nominated actor, complaining of the irony that a film is being made about him trying to get out of the film industry. For over a year, rumors swirled that Joaquin Phoenix’s new gigs have been a publicity stunt since a camera had been following him around. Much like reality television of today, it will be up to each individual viewer as to what he or she thinks.
How much of any show is real or fake today? When anyone can take a video and edit the content on their home computer and post it to YouTube there can be instant success no matter what the point of the presentation. Perhaps it’s not a matter of if you believe Joaquin Phoenix and Casey Affleck as being real as opposed to the message they bring.
Even religious texts are the same way. If we, as a modern society, take some religious texts too literally the meaning will get lost. The overall meaning of religious texts is to lead a pious life and be good to each other as humans.
I think that many will not be able to see Joaquin Phoenix’s performance as anything more than showing off for the cameras. Reality television tries to show us the “real” situations that people get into but I always wonder how much of it is caused by the cameras rolling. Would Jon and Kate Gosselin really have had so many struggles had the television crews not been in their lives? The same is true for this new documentary from Joaquin Phoenix. Is it real or is it staged? The world may never know.
All I know is that Joaquin Phoenix is a talented actor and I’d hate to see his talents go to waste. Even if Phoenix’s choices may not be the best in the world at least his acting can be considered noteworthy. Whatever the point of the documentary, Joaquin Phoenix has certainly created a buzz at the Venice Film Festival.
The Associated Press provided information for this article.