SXSW Film

Daily reviews and interviews

My Effortless Brilliance

D: Lynn Shelton; with Sean Nelson, Basil Harris, Calvin Reeder

Successful author Eric (Nelson) is dumped by his old friend Dylan (Harris) and told that "you've always been an asshole." Two years later and clearly the words still sting as Eric visits an unexpecting Dylan at his cabin in the woods. As the visit turns into a drunken weekend, the males bond, unbond, and bond again in compelling and elusive ways. There is little shouting or confrontation, but the largely improvised script and Shelton's camera, which peeks through branches or windows from a distance, let the talking to do the talking. Reading between the characters' lines sheds a modicum of light on their relationship – past and present. The awkward silences and, later, the well-timed comedic jabs between the two feel natural and show off the mixture of comfortable acting and laid-back direction that make this character study so watchable.

Thursday, March 13, 1:30pm, Alamo Ritz

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
SXSW Film Releases Full Feature Lineup
SXSW Film Releases Full Feature Lineup
Slate includes everyone from Wes Anderson to the Zellners

Monica Riese, Jan. 30, 2014

Mindy Kaling Comes to SXSW
Mindy Kaling Comes to SXSW
The comedian and showrunner will speak March 9

Monica Riese, Jan. 21, 2014

More Screens
Austin Artist Brings Gamera to Vibrant Life in a New Box Set
Austin Artist Brings Gamera to Vibrant Life in a New Box Set
Matt Frank builds the perfect monster

Richard Whittaker, Aug. 28, 2020

SXSW Film
SXSW Film Reviews: 'Sake-Bomb'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

Amy Smith, March 15, 2013

More by James Renovitch
Dave Chappelle to Do Three Shows at Stubb's
Dave Chappelle to Do Three Shows at Stubb's
Tickets are on sale now and will go fast!

Nov. 13, 2020

So You Want to Vote
So You Want to Vote
A flowchart to help guide you through mail-in ballots, voter registration

Sept. 4, 2020

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle