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January 23, 2011 3:51 PM   Subscribe

Catfish: Filmmakers Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost begin to film Ariel's brother Nev, a photographer who shares office space with the the pair in NYC. Nev begins an online relationship--through Facebook--with a family in rural Michigan: an 8-year-old girl, the girl's mother, and most significantly, the girl's older sister, with whom Nev develops a romantic relationship. The trio ultimately discover that all is not what it seems. The latter might describe the film critically acclaimed Catfish itself, which the makers defend as completely true. Ten reasons why Catfish is fake. Roger Ebert liked it, but doesn't seem to care if it's fake or not. Others think it's just sort of fake. More here and here.
posted by zardoz (22 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
So, just how spoiler-filled are the links here? Because I haven't seen the film yet, and don't want to have another Crying Game experience where "the big secret" was blabbed to me before I saw it.
posted by hippybear at 4:01 PM on January 23, 2011


iscatfishfake.com

(BTW, the ten reasons link was borrowed from here, or vice versa.)
posted by anarch at 4:07 PM on January 23, 2011


The articles and reviews should be appropriately vague, or offer a spoiler warning.
posted by zardoz at 4:16 PM on January 23, 2011


I am pretty sure this is a double...
posted by Windigo at 4:17 PM on January 23, 2011 [1 favorite]


When we first meet the mysterious mother/love interest, the shot is angled so that her face is obstructed by a plant and then a post, we have been waiting the whole movie to see her. If I was filming this I would at least try to move the camera a little to the side, unless of course, I was trying to increase the dramatic tension.

Ha! A real doc wouldn't try to increase the dramatic tension!
posted by Beardman at 4:54 PM on January 23, 2011 [1 favorite]


Ha! A real doc wouldn't try to increase the dramatic tension!

You're kidding, right?
posted by fairmettle at 4:58 PM on January 23, 2011


Windigo, if it is, it doesn't show up when you Google "catfish" + "documentary" + "MetaFilter" or "catfish" + "movie" + "MetaFilter." Perhaps we discussed it in a post about some other film about which "Is it true or not?" was an issue, like Exit Through the Gift Shop? Because I seem to remember talking about it on the Blue also.
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:01 PM on January 23, 2011


(BTW, the ten reasons link was borrowed from here, or vice versa.)

The iscatfishfake.com site specifically says it's linking to geekykitschycool.com, so I'm not seeing "borrowing".
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:33 PM on January 23, 2011


Why is this an FPP right now?

Trying not to be too much of a jerk here, but this film was not at all worth the hype when I saw it several months ago, and I'm not seeing any reason to discuss it again.
posted by graphnerd at 7:35 PM on January 23, 2011


There's a similar film that's much better called "Tall Hot Blonde" or something like that but I'm finding a link right this moment.
posted by stinkycheese at 7:48 PM on January 23, 2011


*not finding*
posted by stinkycheese at 7:48 PM on January 23, 2011


For those who are impatient and cheapskates like me, you can save two hours of your life and just cut right to the chase.
posted by hincandenza at 8:38 PM on January 23, 2011


"Ha! A real doc wouldn't try to increase the dramatic tension!"

You're kidding, right?

...Are you?
posted by EmGeeJay at 9:17 PM on January 23, 2011




It's trying to make me interested, but I am not interested.
This is interesting, but has less to do with the movie than with the way movies are promoted.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:07 AM on January 24, 2011


The most shocking part of this movie was when Nev got out of bed in pajama bottoms to check his email and you see that he has a lower back tattoo.
posted by blueberry at 2:04 AM on January 24, 2011 [1 favorite]


It seems like it'd be a better movie if it was fake - then at least you could make a case that it's a commentary on how people are willing to believe that everyone on the internet is a fake and internet relationships aren't real, but aren't skeptical of what they see in a film.

The movie has only just made it to cinemas here, and at least one radio reviewer was breathlessly telling everyone not to read spoilers, just go and see it and decide if you really trust Facebook or not. But maybe he should think about the next layer: just because you saw it at a cinema, doesn't mean it's the truth.
posted by harriet vane at 2:07 AM on January 24, 2011


It's a good film. I don't believe that it's 'fake' in the sense that the people are actors, but I'm quite willing to believe that some of the scenes early on in the film may have been filmed later, to make the story better. That is to say, these things happened, but they didn't film them at the time, so re-created them later for the sake of the storytelling. I also think that some things may have happened in a different order, and again this is ok, within reason.

For example, in Anvil the ending in Tokyo always gives me goosebumps, but apparently the concert actually happened before they were shopping the CD around. I'll forgive the film makers that because it gives them a great ending for the film.
posted by DanCall at 2:16 AM on January 24, 2011 [1 favorite]


from mefi's own TLP:

Funny, that's not what I thought was interesting. Maybe it was the subtitles, but the Korean bootleg I saw was about three megalomaniacs who actually believed it was completely ok to go a woman's house in the middle of the night, unannounced.
posted by r_nebblesworthII at 3:31 AM on January 24, 2011 [1 favorite]


If you’ve already seen it, here’s Slates spoiler-filled discussion of the movie. (direct link to MP3)
posted by blueberry at 4:52 AM on January 24, 2011


I don't think it's fake. I think that if it was fake the filmmakers would have been too worried about be accused of exploiting the two disabled guys to include them.
posted by alby at 8:26 AM on January 24, 2011


I don't believe that it's 'fake' in the sense that the people are actors, but I'm quite willing to believe that some of the scenes early on in the film may have been filmed later, to make the story better. That is to say, these things happened, but they didn't film them at the time, so re-created them later for the sake of the storytelling. I also think that some things may have happened in a different order

(spoilers?)

This was my take, that it's fake only in Nev's (and the filmmakers') reaction to events. The timing of events is just sort of impossible as it plays out on screen. It means they started filming him just after he got the email from Abby, and it just happened that that led to a relationship with the family, and it just happened that the real story was juicy as all get out.

Nev is really, really nice at the end, which makes him look like a generous, caring soul. Maybe he is, but I'll bet those guys did an intensive investigation and probably flew out to Michigan and surveilled her house, etc all before filming anything at all. They knew that the audience would be sympathetic to the woman, so Nev was really nice to her. The sting was set up from the start, that's what's fake. And that's at least half the movie.
posted by zardoz at 1:20 PM on January 24, 2011


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