brainwashed

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Spellbound

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While at first glance a documentary following 8 contestants in the 1999 National Spelling Bee might seem like a sleeper, don't obey your instincts: If this film was fiction it may very well have been directed by Christopher Guest. This movie is hilarious, both intentionally and inadvertently, throughout its 95 minute duration. (And don't be fooled by the title, this film has nothing to do with the fantastic Hitchcock film of the same name starring the late Gregory Peck.) It was interesting to see a filmmaker take a subject I could care less about (it's my opinion that spelling competitions are even less important that Trivial Pursuit) and have me on the edge of my seat. There is plenty to love in this film, whether it is the hyperactive spaz who "talks like a musical robot", or the stereotypical mom who decorates her house with bees. I guess the only thing I would like to have seen in the film would have been a epilogue visiting the children again today (the film was shot in 1999). It'd be nice to find out how many of the kids went on to compete again in following years. This is a tense, well-edited film that most people can enjoy. While it probably doesn't require the big screen, the communal laughter makes it worth the theater price.
Last Updated on Friday, 09 September 2005 02:04  


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