I’m Still Here (2010)

2 Jun

How much pleasure do you get out of watching a train wreck? That’s the first question I thought of after watching this documentary (not even thinking about the discussions whether or not this is real). My answer to this question? “None whatsoever”. Joaquin Phoenix, a succesful actor (Gladiator, Walk the Line, We Own The Night, The Yards), decides to give up acting and focus on starting his music career by becoming a rapper. This journey is filmed by his brother-in-law Casey Affleck, who followed him everywhere.

Affleck decides to show everything, which are sometimes things that only seem to be shown to shock the viewer. We see Phoenix using drugs, party with some call girls and treating people like trash.

Casey Affleck has stated that it is all a set up, which would put this movie in the same league as the type of movies that are made by Sacha Baron Cohen. He didn’t succeed. Phoenix tries to get an appointment with Sean Combs to have him produce his album, but when you hear the music he already made it becomes very clear that he is not talented as a rapper. He doesn’t have a flow and there are moments where you really can’t understand what he’s saying. You might think he’s making a comedy album like Tom Green or The Lonely Island made, but he’s taking himself so serious, that this doesn’t seem to be the case. His new look (which can easily be described as “bum”) doesn’t help with acceptance by others, which in the end turns Phoenix himself into a joke. If he really wanted others to take him serious he should have really planned it differently.

After watching this movie you really haven’t learned much or are given a goal which has been reached. You see what he’s striving for, but that’s it. The movie feels like a horrible collection of shocking moments. I really didn’t have any compassion for JP (as he likes to call himself), which makes it a long, boring movie. I hope that he will return to the thing he’s a good at, which is acting in great movies. If you like watching train wrecks, then you should watch this movie, but my warning: “There’s nothing here to see, please move on.”

Score: 3

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