Concert mockumentaries are a rare breed of movie, and The Nowhere Inn looks particularly unique. The trailer for this genre-bending concert film is here, giving us a glimpse at the movie madness real-life friends Annie Clark (a.k.a. St. Vincent) and Carrie Brownstein put together.
A Boring Rock Star?
The Nowhere Inn is a fake documentary about Clark/St. Vincent, following her backstage as she tours. As she tells us in the trailer, she asked her best friend (Brownstein) to film the documentary, though we see Brownstein getting progressively frustrated. Onstage, as St. Vincent, Clark is a dynamo. Offstage, the highlight of her evenings is a double word score in a single-person game of Scrabble. Brownstein begs her to make things more interesting and Clark decides to stay in character as St. Vincent both onstage and off.
“This is how actors play rock stars in movies,” she says with exaggerated movements, a cigarette perched between her fingers. “I love you, but I’m married to the road.”
As St. Vincent tries to act more like a rock star, she begins behaving erratically. She even asks Brownstein to film her having sex with her girlfriend (Dakota Johnson, playing herself). Things begin to look more surreal as Clark’s psyche begins to crack under the pressure of the documentary. In the end, we know they never finished “the film” because Clark tells us so in a Blair Witch-style introduction. It’s a fun, somewhat bizarre way to tell a story of fame and friendship.
Friendship on Film
The Nowhere Inn looks a little bit Lynchian, a little bit This is Spinal Tap. The real trick will be if Brownstein and Clark can maintain the balance between comedy and the every-increasing horror. Our review found the movie a little mishmashed, but with some incredible visuals and lots of lovely little moments between the two friends.
Here’s the official synopsis:
From real-life friends Annie Clark (a.k.a. GRAMMY award-winning recording and touring artist St. Vincent) and Carrie Brownstein (Portlandia, Sleater-Kinney, the best-selling Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl) comes the metafictional account of two creative forces banding together to make a documentary about St. Vincent’s music, touring life, and on-stage persona. But they quickly discover unpredictable forces lurking within the subject and filmmaker that threaten to derail the friendship, the project, and the duo’s creative lives. From first-time filmmaker Bill Benz (Portlandia, At Home With Amy Sedaris) comes a densely woven, laugh-out-loud funny and increasingly fractured commentary on reality, identity, and authenticity. A story of two close friends who attempt to wrestle the truth out of a complex subject before the hall of mirrors that is their artistic lives devours them completely.
The Nowhere Inn will release in theaters and streaming on demand September 17, 2021.
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