Bobcat Goldthwait is known as am iconic comedian and skilled television director but has been steadily America’s finest and most consistent independent filmmaker since John Waters. He sometimes gets compared to Waters, David Lynch and Todd Haynes but that is just another way of saying there is no clear genre for our most unique filmmakers. That is of course the thrill to true independent film making. If you are new to his work then you are in for a real treat. Grab yourself these six films any way you can, Amazon, Netflix, good old fashioned DVDs and plan to be locked in for a great ride.
Of all the films on the list, this is the one most quoted by stand-up comedians. Of course they would because the clowns in this alternate universe drink, hard chase women, and basically act like club stand-ups. It’s uneven and rough and worth watching for the hilarious street gang rivalry of clowns and mimes. A must watch for any fans of stand up. Written, directed and starring Bobcat, the film also features Paul Dooley, Julie Brown, a cameo from Robin Williams and appearances from Florence Henderson, Kathy Griffin, and Adam Sandler. Watch the trailer.
How much sexual history should a woman share with the love of her life? Not much. Sleeping Dogs Lie has the premise of of a young woman who once performed fellatio on her pet dog and shares that secret with her fiance. Most directors would be painted into a corner with this but Goldthwait turns it into a morality tale about sexual inequality, hypocrisy, acceptance, and and true family values. Starring Melinda Page Hamilton, and Bryce Johnson. Watch the trailer.
This could very well be Robin Williams best performance of his entire career. Williams plays a teacher and failed writer until a tragic accident and an artful dark spin turns him into the World’s Greatest Dad. It deals with loss, loneliness deceit and becomes oddly life affirming. If Bobcat would have only made this one film, he would still be a legendary film maker. Starring Robin Williams, Daryl Sabara, Evan Martin, Alexie Gilmore. Watch the trailer here.
Joel Murray is mind blowing as “Frank” a man so fed up with American culture that he plans with revenge on the people who he believes have made life unbearable. It’s the best sort of satire that makes us look at ourselves and how we are playing into the evolution of our civilization. Come get us Frank. We deserve it. Starring Joel Murray and Tara Lynne Barr. Watch the trailer here.
This is Goldthwait’s most accessible film and one of his highest rated on Rotten Tomatoes. It falls into the ‘found footage ‘ brand of independent horror but god damn it if you don’t start believing that a Bigfoot could be right outside the tent. Starring Alexie Gilmore and Bryce Johnson. Watch the trailer here.
This is Bobcat’s first attempt at documentary film making and it is a jewel. Barry Crimmins is a brilliant comedian and early mentor to Goldthwait and has lived an extraordinary life. A life worth examining. Here’s hoping the Oscar voters take notice because it would be a blast to see these guys on the red carpet. Watch the trailer here.