One Hour Photo Mark Romanek

One Hour Photo Mark Romanek
A Taxi Driver for the Walmart generation, One Hour Photo does not have Robin Williams' Sy Parrish ask "are you lookin' at me?" but rather demonstrates that he's looking at us. Parrish is an empty shell in khakis, a veteran of the photo counter at an affluent suburban big box store. There he's been tracing the happy lives of his customers, fixating particularly on the Yorkin family (Gladiator's Connie Nielson, Alias's Michael Vartan). When he realises that the happy-go-lucky life he's seen in snapshots isn't entirely true, Parrish snaps. That much is the basic premise for this thriller. How he snaps, how the story unfolds, and Robin Williams' career-defining performance is what makes One Hour Photo one of the best films of the year, and a landmark of the lonely guy genre perfected in the cynical 1970s. This is Williams' best work, and the strongest film of his so-called "triptych of evil" (with Insomnia and Death to Smoochy). He literally disappears into this role - his clothes and bleached, thinning hair are a dead-on match for the colour scheme in the store and he disturbingly blends into the background. What's amazing - and what the DVD so aptly demonstrates - is how difficult it is for Williams to subsume his volcanic exuberance into Sy's unseen nowhere man. The DVD documents Williams constant outbursts - on set, in interviews, on Charlie Rose, in rehearsals - and how that energy gets pushed down into this lonely little man. Truly disturbing, unexpected, and worthy of the repeat visits and deeper exploration this DVD offers. Extras: Commentary, Sundance "Anatomy of a Scene" feature, making of, Charlie Rose interview with Romanek and Williams. (Fox)