October 25, 2021

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St. Vincent’s Playing Helself, ironically, in the film ‘Nowhere’

8 min read

There haven’t been too many sharp rock ‘n’ roll satires in recent years, with “It’s Is Spinal Tap” perhaps setting the bar too high for future competitors to follow the platform’s bootsteps. But a new movie, “The Nowhere In”, starring and written by St. Vincent and Carrie Bronstein, boldly offers musicians and the media a way to land as a Syriaccom two night dream. As St. Vincent said it was a comedy “with a scotch of horror” Diversity In a previous interview about the film. The source of the horror, as it is? No less a parody and / or a serious bogman than celebrity narcissism.

In the film, St. Vincent, aka Annie Clark, is portraying herself, at least at the beginning, in a documentary made by her best friend Braunstein as a star, portraying herself to a point. Things don’t go well when Clark comes out as an annoying backstage, and Bronstein begins to claim a tweak to St. Vincent’s offstage personality that eventually forces him into a kind of narcissistic fugue. “From now on, I need to say more about how other people are going to act,” the fictional St. Vincent angrily announces at one of the film’s most ridiculously fleeting moments.

When “Nowhere In” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival last year, some critics were confused by its changing style and melody. But it is finding its critical champions, such as Richard Brody of the New Yorker, who wrote this week, “As you can imagine, the whole Shebang is so spontaneous self-reference, and so noisy with humor, that it should be by right. Own trampoline disappears, but there’s a saving grace: it’s a fun movie.

He is right: this is a rock film that we have had as much fun since the days of Rock Stonehenge. But if movie principals are reluctant to call it actually comedy, it may be just how dry straight and ultimately dark it becomes without trying to confuse potential viewers. If a movie between Rob Reiner and “Inland Empire” could land, it could be that movie.

Now that the film is off the festival circuit and hitting theaters and streaming services this weekend, Diversity Caught up again with St. Vincent (who will be headlining the Hollywood Bowl on September 2, will be touring behind his “Daddy’s Home” album) to learn more about how far he and Brownstein wanted to go to play the alternate-universe version of Carrie and Annie.

Variety: Have you had the opportunity to see it with the audience and see where laughter comes or doesn’t come and how people react?

Saint Vincent: The only time I saw with the audience was in Sundance. And I think professional actors don’t go to screenings and sit there with the audience. I didn’t know that. I just thought people did it! I was green. So I would say, seeing the picture with a horrible guy. [Laughs.] I don’t know why we just didn’t go to drink and come back for questioning. This is a wild movie, and it will get a very different response. I think some people will like it and some people will hate it. But it’s good by me. I think it’s a sign that you’re taking some chances.

It’s easy to imagine an audience where maybe people are laughing, and then another audience where people don’t know what to do in very quiet, psychologically thrilling places.

It goes to a lot of places, that’s for sure. It’s a lot about setting an expectation. I think we went to Sundance and didn’t tell anyone what to expect, and for some people, it was fun, and then for some people, it was probably arguing in a way that they didn’t love – people didn’t do it in any way, shape or form. Find out what it was. I was thinking about it, when you drink something and you think it’s water, and you drink it and it’s Coca-Cola এবং and it’s not like you don’t like Coca-Cola, do you think it’s going to be water? So you are temporarily unmoored.

You You’re playing a fallen, fictional version and maybe it can be said that you’re already doing what you’re doing on stage as an artist, and that’s a part of what this movie is all about. But as the challenge of playing your first big character, has it made it easier or harder for you to play someone’s character as opposed to a completely fictional role?

It was an incredibly warm and welcoming way to make my first adventure in acting, as it was a script I co-wrote with my best friend and played my own versions. So it can get one as a soft landing. But not having some distance can also be clever. The other answer is: I don’t know, because I did it first, and I don’t know what the alternative would be.

Lazy loaded pictures

St. The Vincent and Carrie Brownstein in “The Nowhere In”
Courtesy of IFC Films

The movie does a really good job, one of which is how to make a meta-way, a documentary or some kind of non-fiction fiction, just the presence of an observer’s feeling, or of course a subject raised by a filmmaker. . How flies on the wall affect the situation.

Yes, the behavior of what is being seen changes. [Editor’s note: sometimes known as the Hawthorne effect or observer effect.] It has the aspect that people inadvertently or subconsciously – Or Deliberately – change their behavior when they know they have a camera on them.

But even then (the reality) is that if you’re watching a movie about a musician, commissioned by that musician, they have the final cut. They are showing you what they want to see. And it’s not that ugly, but it’s shaped and it’s through their own lenses and it’s from their point of view, in large part. So we thought, in a fun way, scripting something would actually be more authentic than trying to make some quote-unspoken “real”.

Apparently, since the premiere of “The Nowhere In” at Sundance, Netflix has had a myriad of documentaries about pop stars where the pop star is the executive producer. And this great effort has been made to convince us, although they are solely responsible for the documentary, and that it is intended to sell something, that it is entirely real and authentic.

Yeah Al that sounds pretty crap to me, Looks like BT aint for me either. And this movie is not like that. Carrie and I talked about the fact that usually the purpose of a movie about a musician or a pop star is to humanize them, and make them like them. With that, it’s possible that we’re both playing disliked people. [Laughs.] Deliberately so. Its purpose is not necessarily to please one.

There are some scenes where your character is having conversations with people that look like they had to get out of real life. Like the opening scene, where your driver wants to know who you are, and even though you’re politely saying, “I’m not for everyone,” he’s really insisting on telling you, “No, I’m driving.” Lots Famous people and I have never heard of you before. ”

Yes, of course. Obviously there is some embarrassment in the context, which is, fortunately, I am a musician who has a career and has had some success, but I am nowhere near the family name. Which I am fully aware of. It’s part of the joke. But yes, it did happen, of course! I mean, it’s not Madonna behind Limo, it’s me. And I also think, just being a tour musician, half the game of being good at what you do is knowing how to assimilate insults. It’s like half the game.

Lazy loaded pictures

Saint the Vincent “The Nowhere In”
Courtesy IFC Films

Going back to the tonal balance of the film, there is a balance between comedy, a kind of comedy and then just the mental-emotional realm. Is there any aspect that you enjoy most about the movie?

Yes, I mean, we’re definitely entering [the realm of] The argument of the Lynchian dream. We go psychedelic. Clearly, Nicholas Roeg has films like Big, Big Consent and “Performance”.

The funniest scene was the one that seemed to me like Nadir of my narcissistic descent. A fan comes into the dressing room with a heartbreaking story and real emotion, and I hijack it to make it about me. Because I can’t imagine a world where everything isn’t about me. And at the end of it all, the fans are comforting me. Carrie has a joke [in the scene] Where he says we both can’t cry. And that’s kind of true! For example, if you are crying and someone starts crying with you, you kind of stop. There’s a kind of osmotic relationship or a kind of yin and yang happening where you can’t both cry. But anyway, that was one of the funniest-slash-scary scenes ever. Because I see bad behavior, really narcissistic behavior, admire and are called brave in this day and age.

Obviously some of the things that are given to stardom are things that benefit you, enhance personality and the ability to create and build iconography. But obviously you don’t want to embrace the negative aspects of stardom and become as narcissistic as this character. Looking at other people might be a victim of narcissism, have you ever felt that you had to be careful against taking some of these traps of fame when creating your artist personality, or was it easy to stay behind all the time?

I think at different times in my life, I was definitely more connected or less connected to the world. But I’m lucky that the arc and trajectory of my career is that I’ve been a little more successful with what I’ve recorded. So I’ve learned to be a person in being a musician and to let more people know who I am. That part I think is really lucky. And I have a great family and there are people around me who never let me go under a rabbit hole, so I feel great about it. But yes, of course, I have done or seen behavior that is just a waste – a waste of human energy, a waste of human time. If you find yourself surrounded by people who will simply say yes to you, this is the beginning of your lineage.

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