Anna Boden And Ryan Fleck's Next Movie Is The Interweaving Drama Hate Mail
Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck's third feature film together, It's Kind Of A Funny Story, was one of the biggest disappointments of last year's Toronto Film Festival. It was big and broad where their previous films had all been perfectly detailed and astute, and though it brought out nice performances from Zach Galifianakis and Emma Roberts, it seemed like so much less than the pair were capable of. But given that they'd turned in two near masterpieces, Half Nelson and Sugar, there was no reason to give up hope-- and now that the two are moving forward on their next movie, we can finally get a look at how they might course-correct and continue being brilliant.
Except, they don't really seem to be course-correcting at all, but tackling a new kind of storytelling entirely-- and one that's been done really, really poorly many times in mainstream Hollywood. According to Variety the duo's next project Hate Mail is a drama that features "interweaving stories about several Manhattanites who encounter various iterations of hate mail and grapple with the subsequent fallout of their relationships." Though it deals with something as specific and unusual as hate mail, it sounds a lot like the structure of something like Valentine's Day or Crash, movies that revolved around a single idea but then collapsed under their own ideological weight.
I have total faith that Boden and Fleck will not allow their movie to do that--no matter how much It's Kind Of A Funny Story seemed too big for them, it was still far more nuanced and likable than anything remotely resembling Valentine's Day. If we're lucky, they may be able to take that interweaving stories format and actually make it worth watching again-- if anyone's going to be able to pull it off, it's got to be people with as much talent as these two have.
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