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I’m Still Here 2010 ***

Interest in Joaquin Phoenix’s elaborate media stunt, in which he claimed to be giving up a successful acting career in favor of a new direction as a gnarly-looking bearded rapper, peaked just before I’m Still here was screened. As soon as it became apparent that the actor’s much publicized disintegration was a hoax, a disgruntled media and public turned their back on the project; a pity because viewed as a fiction, Casey Affleck’s film has plenty of offbeat comedy and pathos. It’s arguable that the negative reaction to I’m Still Here’s reflects the success of the hoax; as a reflection of the painful nature of stardom and the lack of creative freedom in the modern media, I’m Still Here’s shambling charm actually hits an unpalatable target.

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