• BEST IN STATE—Senior Courtney Schoen Lewis was named Best PR Student in Utah. Story

Sundance 2013: ‘Crystal Fairy’ is a trip . . . literally

January 19th, 2013 Posted in Opinion

Story & Photo by Ben Hansen
Special to Hard News Café

PARK CITY—The 2013 Sundance Film Festival opened with a handful of films on Thursday night. Perhaps the most anticipated of the bunch, “Crystal Fairy” promised star power (Michael Cera), an eccentric director (Sebastian Silva), and an intriguing storyline.

Michael and Gabby

Michael Cera and Gaby Hoffmann, stars of “Crystal Fairy,” directed by Sebastian Silva, at the film’s Sundance release.

Jamie (Michael Cera) is a drug-abusing American boy in Chile who wants to take his local friends on a mescaline trip—a voyage to find, cook, and drink the psychedelic San Pedro cactus. While at a Chilean house party the night before departing on the trip, a high Jaime meets the hippie-esque Crystal Fairy (Gaby Hoffmann), gives her his phone number, and invites her on their mescaline trip.

This invitation turns into a regrettable, most uncomfortable situation for Jamie as the group heads out on their quest for the San Pedro cactus. All the while, Crystal Fairy becomes progressively more peculiar around every corner, which seems to rub Jaime the wrong way time and time again.

Cera demonstrates maturing abilities as an actor in this role. While we adored him as an awkward teen in “Arrested Development” and “Superbad,” he now has grown up, sort of. His discomfort and raw emotion outwardly manifest what so many of us frequently feel, yet keep to ourselves. This time around, the audience has the opportunity to observe Cera perform as a self-absorbed jerk, a role in which he thrives.

Director Silva did a masterful job of casting for this film, as the synergy of the cast was enough to entertain through much of the movie. The camaraderie of the cast was evident, both at the red carpet before the movie, and on the screen. As the free-spirited Crystal Fairy becomes progressively odder through the film,  tensions between her and Jamie become palpable, leading to both humorous moments and uncomfortable dialogue.

The interactions between the two are memorable, as both Cera and Hoffman grate on each other in very realistic fashion. Silva’s brothers make up a supporting cast that helps anchor the movie and calm the uneasy tensions that Cera and Hoffman create. The Spanish/English translations provided by each of the brothers makes for some of the best comedic moments in the movie.

Overall, the show wanders, which, when mixed with the camaraderie and friction of the main characters, makes for interesting viewing.

“Crystal Fairy” will stir up its own controversy, with plenty of nudity and an abundance of drug use mixed in with the humor. If you are not easily offended and eager for a humorous, free-flowing story, this film offers many unexpected laughs and interesting plot twists that make it a compelling flick.


Tags: , , , , ,

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.