Only once in my life have I demanded a refund for a movie ticket based on the film’s actual content. Said opus was James Toback’s “Two Girls & A Guy“, “an insult to the public’s intelligence”, I told a stunned Chelsea Loews manager.
In retrospect, this was pretty lame on my part. Yes, the film’s first 30 minutes were a trip to Suck City. But having sat thru anything beyond the opening credits, I should’ve forfeited my admission. If I ever run into Toback, I fully intend to give him $7. But I digress.
The Guardian’s Mark Brown surveys the competition on offer at this month’s Cannes Film Festival, and reports Toback’s latest, “Tyson”, a documentary about the walking disaster area known as Iron Mike, is “an affectionate portrait” of the former heavyweight champion.
Toback said he had been always been fascinated by Tyson and cast him in his semi-improvised – and star-studded – 1995 movie Black and White, which satirises rich, white liberal kids who want to be black. The funniest scene has Robert Downey Jnr’s sleazy gay character coming on to Tyson: he gets slapped. “I’m from a different culture,” says Tyson.
In an interview with Variety magazine, Toback said it would be an honest portrait of the boxer. “The point is not to polish his image or make a cinematic apology, but rather to get a first-hand look at a very complex and epic story.”
Toback said he had conducted more than 30 hours of interviews with Tyson. “He was honest about all the things that have highlighted his life, from the bitter divorce, the ear-biting, prison, to his becoming a sex addict. He is self-aware, smart and a totally fractured personality, and he made himself completely vulnerable.”