American Movie
American Movie (1999)

An account of a Midwestern filmmaker's effort to make an independent picture. Mark Borchardt is passionate about cinema, and his dream project is a film called "Northwestern". But he is serious debt, and decides that if he… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: November 5, 1999
DVD Release Date: May 23, 2000
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Critic Score: 94% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Jason Gorber
POV Magazine

. . .American Movie remains a peerless feature doc. 17 years after its initial release, it remains a vital part of the non-fiction canon, a warm look at artistic folly that speaks to the delusional dreamer in all of us.

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Daniel Eagan
Film Journal International

Despite some lulls in pacing, American Movie ends up an inspiring and very entertaining look at a true dreamer.

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Thomas Delapa
Boulder Weekly

Despite Borchardt's scary self-conviction, I'm not sure we're so easily convinced he deserves to make movies--or be the star of this one.

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Rob Nelson
City Pages, Minneapolis/St. Paul

With American Movie, director Chris Smith finds the heart of cinema in the unlikely environs of Milwaukee.

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Michael Dequina

A warm and funny tribute to the passion for film as well as the drive and determination of dreamers in general.

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Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid

Smith takes care not to make fun of his subject, even though the temptation must have been there.

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Stefan Birgir Stefansson

much more fun than the actual short film

Martin Scribbs
Low IQ Canadian

An inspiration for every dreamer with too many excuses. If this chowderhead can make his movie, you can realize your ambition, too.

Brent Simon
Entertainment Today

When a film feels this rooted and comfortable with itself, it's hard to assail its faults -- in this case, a steadfast refusal to handle its characters with anything other than heart-shaped kid gloves.

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More reviews for American Movie

Flixster Audience Score: 90% Flixster User Reviews
Jim Hunter
A midwestern independent filmmaker marshals his friends to produce his horror film, Coven, a title that he decidedly pronounces "Coe-ven".… More
Lorenzo von Matterhorn
<i>"It's alright, it's okay, there's something to live for... Jesus told me so!"</i> Documentary about an aspiring… More
Spencer S.
The story of an amateur film director in the suburbs of Milwaukee who can never seem to catch a break, this documentary follows three years in the life of Mark… More
Devon Bott
Amateurs in any field or endeavor often lack perspective when it comes to what they do: I'm sure minor league ball players often compare their stats to… More
Chris Weber
I think Ebert said it best when he stated that all people who want to make movies need to see this before hand. It's a pretty good piece of advice, and… More
Mike S
Tragicomical documentary, about a wannabe film-maker (Mark Borchardt) and his high-flying ambitions to make "the great american movie". What makes it… More

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