'Fat Kid Rules the World'

Daily reviews and interviews

SXSW Film

Fat Kid Rules the World

Narrative Spotlight
D: Matthew Lillard; with Billy Campbell, Jacob Wysocki, Matt O'Leary

This feature-length adaptation of K.L. Going's young-adult novel follows the exploits of Troy Billings (Wysocki), a lumpen, suicidal, mother-lost teenager who finds an unlikely friend in Marcus (O'Leary), a homeless, drug-addicted punk musician. In his directing debut, actor Matthew Lillard (The Descendants, Scream) treats his characters with utmost compassion: Troy compulsively overeats not to make himself the butt of lazy fat kid jokes, but to subtly demonstrate that he medicates himself with food. Troy's father, played with touching nuance and empathy by Billy Campbell (most recently of AMC's The Killing), is a rarity in the YA world: a parent who functions not as a foil or buffoon, but as a deeply loving, well-intentioned dad who is doing the best he can with the tools available to him. Lillard's careful handling of the story of two boys messily navigating the mosh pit of late childhood is a love note to fat kids everywhere.


Saturday, March 17, 2pm, Alamo Lamar

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at austinchronicle.com/sxsw. For scheduling on the go, here's a SXSW Film Pocket Guide, which includes the handy Film Grid. Sign up for our South-by-specific newsletter at austinchronicle.com/newsletters/ for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest Tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

READ MORE
More SXSW Film
SXSW Film
SXSW Film Reviews: 'TPB AFK: The Pirate Bay Away From Keyboard'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

Richard Whittaker, March 15, 2013

SXSW Film
SXSW Film Reviews: 'Unhung Hero'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

Joey Keeton, March 15, 2013

More Screens Reviews
SXSW Film
SXSW Film Reviews: 'We Cause Scenes'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

Wayne Alan Brenner, March 15, 2013

SXSW Film
SXSW 2013 Film Reviews: 'Linsanity'
Daily reviews and interviews

Michael King, March 15, 2013

More by Melanie Haupt
Staying Healthy to Stay in School
Staying Healthy to Stay in School
National nonprofit Communities in Schools looks at the role of food in education

Sept. 22, 2017

Dripping Springs Keeps Growing, But Can the Dining Scene Keep Up?
Dripping Springs Keeps Growing, But Can the Dining Scene Keep Up?
Austin real estate pushes restaurateurs beyond city limits

June 9, 2017

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

SXSW Film, Matthew Lillard, K.L. Going, Fat Kid Rules the World

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)