USA, 2011, 90 Minute Running Time
Topics: Drama, Gay/Lesbian
Program: World Cinema
Showcasing all of his gifts as a creator of impressionist cinema (well illustrated by his ShortFest 2010 troika, The Clerk’s Tale, Herbert White, and The Feast of Stephen) James Franco’s Sal presents us with a lucidly rendered, minimalist take on the last day in the tragically shortened life of actor Sal Mineo, one-time teen idol and star of the blockbuster films Exodus and Rebel Without a Cause.
The story begins with Mineo (Val Lauren) having returned to Los Angeles from London. Fallen somewhat into obscurity since his glory days as a double Oscar nominee in the late 50’s and early 60’s, Mineo’s life appears here to be on the cusp of creative rebirth, with no foreboding of his fate. Like Gus Van Sant’s Last Days, which dwelt on the details of Kurt Cobain’s daily routine prior to his suicide, Franco’s film trails his character on a normal day – going to the gym, getting a massage, and working on his latest projects. Nothing prepares us for what is to come, which was anything but normal. A thoroughly engrossing investigation of the quotidian, Sal vividly illustrates Franco’s continuing growth as a gifted and idiosyncratic artist.
Director James Franco, Producer Miles Levy, and Actor Val Johnson are expected to attend both screenings.
DIRECTOR: James Franco
Producer: Caroline Aragon, Vince Jolivette, Miles Levy
Editor: James Franco
Screenwriter: James Franco, Vince Jolivette, Stacey Miller
Cinematographer: Christina Voros
Music: Neil Benezra
Principal Cast: Val Lauren, James Franco, Jim Parrack, Brian Goodman, Stacey Miller
Filmography: The Broken Tower (2011), Good Time Max (2007), The Ape (2005), Fool’s Gold (2005)