“Goodbye Solo” (2009)

Goodbye, Solo is another film I borrowed from the library based on A.O. Scott’s recommendation. It’s directed by Rahmin Bahrani, who also did Chop Shop, which I watched earlier this year. This movie, like that one, is not a crowd pleaser. It’s a small, intense, unflinching laser-focused portrait of a growing relationship between Solo, an upbeat Senegalese cab driver, and William, a taciturn old man with an intriguing request. Set in Winston-Salem NC, it takes place mostly at night. The dark edges of the film add to its moody ambience. There is violence, sadness, but also joy and celebration, too.

This reminded me of Wendy and Lucy, another film that went deep into one individual’s life. It doesn’t move quickly, but it moves deliberately and though-provokingly. It’s lovely, human, true, and moving.

For more on these moody, intense, character-driven movies, see A.O. Scott’s NYT piece on the New New Reality in film, which I linked to here.

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