THE CATECHISM CATACLYSM Director and Cast @ IFC Center this Week!
Posted on Wednesday, October 19th, 2011 by Lauren
Director Todd Rohal and the hilarious co-star duo of Robert Longstreet and Steve Little will be in person for Q&As at the IFC Centers run starting TONIGHT, Wed. 10.19 at the 8:15PM Show, and continuing through Saturday.
8:15 PM SHOW WED-THURS
8:15 PM & 10:30PM SHOWS FRIDAY
The New York Times on THE CATECHISM CATACLYSM:
A Priest and His Buddy on a Downstream Journey
By PAUL BRUNICK and DAVID DEWITT
Published: October 18, 2011
“The Catechism Cataclysm”: did you repeat that twisty little title until you tripped over your tongue? Or, better yet, did you just challenge someone near you to say it three times in a row? The answer may be a good indicator of whether you’ll find this regressively oddball buddy picture infectiously playful or just plain irritating.
A lot of the fun in “The Catechism Cataclysm,” a horror-comic head trip from the writer-director Todd Rohal (“The Guatemalan Handshake”), comes in the form of silly, strange line deliveries: nonsense songs in strained falsetto, crisply over-articulated cuss words, syllables distended into schoolyard taunts.
By the time two baby-talking Japanese tourists arrive to steer the film even further into left field, our two heroes — Robbie (Robert Longstreet), an Ice Capades spotlight operator, and Father Billy (Steve Little), a man-child Roman Catholic pastor — have refined their snake-hissing Satan voice and skillful simulation of flatulence.
“Tell me a story, man,” Father Billy repeatedly pesters Robbie, which reminds me that I should get to the plot. There isn’t much of one, really, beyond the premise — the weekend reunion of two childhood friends who were never actually friends, just loosely connected by an older sister the other once dated — and the drifting trajectory of their canoe down a river. (Beware the melancholy undercurrent of life’s disappointments.)
Mostly, there are lots of stories within the story: priestly parables, absurdist fables, campfire horror yarns. If any thread holds this weird and well-acted film together, it’s a kind of sustained riff on the idea of narrative: our difficulty arranging story events into artful plots or our overriding desire for the closure of a coherent ending, which “Catechism” spectacularly thwarts in a literally mind-blowing surrealist finale.
“Poems are just stories without endings,” Father Billy explains. If you’re feeling thoroughly confused but still sort of curious, “The Catechism Cataclysm” was made for you.