Stone Reader Mark Moskowitz

This documentary has all the elements of a drama. There's obsession, intrigue, mystery and suspense. There's a missing man and a quest to find him. There's humour in the face of this arduous task. But on top of all this the most intriguing element of this film is… a book? In creating Stone Reader, director Mark Moskowitz has constructed a documentary tribute to one of his favourite novels. Moskowitz is an avid reader, and after reading the 1972 novel The Stones of Summer by Dow Mossman, he begins searching for the rest of the author's catalogue. When he discovers that Mossman never wrote another book after this spectacular debut (one that many in the film call "genius"), he sets out to determine what happened. How could such a gifted writer just disappear? It takes awhile for him to get going (he spends a lot of time talking about how he might approach looking for Mossman before taking any action), but finally he starts tracking down people who might be able to lead him in the right direction. By the end, the suspense is building around the mythic figure of the long-lost author. Is he still alive and will the director ever find him? This is a rough looking documentary that is mostly just a pet project for the director, but it's also a tale of a man who is so passionate about something that he can't stop looking for it. At times the excessive amount of interviews with people who have nothing to do with Mossman, or the path to find him, gets tedious (does he really need to talk to the guy who designed the book jacket?), but for those who, after reading a good book, feel like they've developed a relationship with the author, the quest to find Dow Mossman will be fulfilling. Plus: commentary, more. (Microfilm, www.microfilmsinc.com)