1.5 Stars
Year Released: 1999
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 68 minutes
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So you want to watch a movie but you just don’t have the time? Well, director Josh Ferrazzano has perfected a filmmaking technique that makes movies to fit today’s busy lifestyle. For proof, look no further than his “System Noise,” a ridiculously overcut, nonsensical video collage that works every bit as well, if not better, with the VCR in scan mode. All the movie in half the time!
For the record, the minimalist plot of “System Noise,” after an unforgivable three minute plus opening credit sequence, concerns Gilgamesh Jones (Clay Allen) who’s gradually losing his mind. When he’s not hallucinating about flesh-eating zombies in New York City, he’s fixating on the alluring image of Starlett (Jill Flint), who beckons to him from TV, billboards, posters and just about everywhere else. Overwhelmed and obsessing, Jones staggers from one surreal location to the next in a desperate attempt to shake free of Starlett’s spell. Is he cracking up, or is the idea that he’s cracking up all in his head? Yikes. I could easily get just as bored watching something that wasn’t nearly as ambitious as this spectacular failure. Admittedly, this film is visually astounding at times, with tons of off-speed and time-lapse photography, brilliantly over saturated colors and impressive art design. It would work exceptionally well as a video projection at a Pink Floyd show, say, but not as a film because nothing ever happens. For all its visual flash, “System Noise” has largely the same effect on an audience as does white noise. Farrazzano may think his film, with all of its surreal nonsense, is “edgy,” but what it really is, sadly, is a bore.

Posted on February 22, 2000 in Reviews by

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