Story: Two teenage girls meet, becomes best friends, and kill an innocent old woman in less than 24 hours.
Why You Should See It: One day, cinema will be like paintings, an art form that once dominated culture but now can usually be seen at museums. The masses will gravitate to virtual reality or some kind of 360-degree storytelling art form. This may not happen for 20, 30 years, or it could happen sooner. I don’t know. But I do know art when I see it. And many films, even studio affairs, were works of art in the 90s.
I saw “FUN” at a screening at UCLA. There was shock in the air. There was also a feeling that the filmmakers made something cataclysmic. This was the height of the Miramax days, when a tiny movie like this could be picked up for a million dollars (like “Clerks” or “El Mariache”). But “FUN” had the bad luck of:
1) coming out in 1994, the year of “Pulp Fiction”, “The Piano” and “Red”, only three out of probably hundreds of fascinating works of art done on film, and
2) being very similar to another Miramax movie called “Heavenly Creatures,” about two teenage girls who kill one of their mothers.
The deaths in both films are disturbing and seemingly unnecessary. But its completely primal and anthropological how it happens. Why the subject of two girls who become obsessive best friends is not made frequently in movies is a little perplexing, considering how many of us can relate to such a scenario. Many of us have had passionately close same sex friends at some point in our lives. The feeling is similar to finding a lover, and ultimately, not that different. The intensity may be even more powerful, considering that that same sex friend is not someone you sexually desire. You’re just so into them, you want to be with them as much as possible. They’re just “fun” to be around. You’d do anything with this person, even murder someone.
Although, “Heavenly Creatures” is probably a better film, “FUN” remains very unique, bold and light years ahead of anything coming out of Sundance today.
Rene Humphrey and Alicia Witt deliver star-turning performances, even if both actresses are hardly known today (though I believe they are employed regularly). There’s all these talks about Hollywood changing sexes in their scripts, making men into women and so on, but you can’t change a philosophy. “FUN” is the movie they would make if they actually cared. Of course, “FUN” would never be made… today, not just in Hollywood, but anywhere, not even as a micro-budget shaky cam. I really can’t fucking believe this is on YouTube.
Written by: Norith Soth