Don’t Come Knocking (2005)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5

France/Germany/USA, 2005, , , ,  ,, , , , .  Story by Wim Wenders, , Screenplay by Sam Shepard.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by , .  

 and Wim Wenders reunite for the first time since Paris, Texas for a film that has all the same trappings as that marvelous melodrama but none of its substance or heart.  Shepard plays a once-famous, now obscure cowboy film star who walks straight off the set of his latest forgettable project and drives across America’s heartland in his car. With an insurance agent (, in an incongruously uncomfortable role) and a daughter he does not know () on his tail, Shepard heads to the woman () he’d left alone and pregnant years before and discovers that he has a son () he was also unaware of.   has a couple of memorable scenes as his mother, but for some reason nothing sticks in this one; it has everything that should make it a haunting, gorgeous classic, but it also has a pretentious self-awareness so strong that even the panoramic vistas seem to be announcing themselves as metaphors for the protagonist’s inner life; it’s as if it were written and directed not by a filmmaker but by the academic doing his thesis on the filmmaker. Watch it, if you must, for the performances, because they’re all great.

Cannes Film Festival:  In Competition

European Film Award:  Best European Cinematographer
Nominations: Best European Film; Best European Director (Wim Wenders); Best European Editor

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