What a great idea for a film! Why didnít anyone think of it before? You do a Blair Witch style faux-documentary interviewing the man who actually shot JFK. This should be a no brainer. So it turns out the real mystery is who killed this great idea and made as boring a film as Interview With the Assassin.
I guess I just never bought it. I never once felt like I could be watching an interview with the man who shot Kennedy. All the way through the film, I kept being pulled out of the experience. The film makers never created a convincing world.
The title character is so completely over the top that you just canít buy his story. He comes off as a madman, falsely convinced that he was involved in a conspiracy. Maybe he is supposed to be but for the film to have really worked, it would have had us wondering. I donít think I ever wondered.
Then there is the actor who plays the film maker. He has amateur written all over him. His performance is pathetic but itís not just him thatís the problem. His character is written in a manner that is completely unbelievable. He does things that are ridiculous and that seem to be done only to advance the plot or accommodate the awkward conceit of the film. There are too many moments in the film which would never have been filmed if the scenario were really playing out. This takes us out of the film and breaks the reality that a film like Interview With the Assassin needs to pull it off.
The film makers seem to stumble over their idea. Itís like they canít figure out how to tell the story they wish to in the format. How do we get the scenes we need when we assume that this is all going to be footage shot by the journalist? There is too much filler. There are too many moments where convenient exposition is plugged in. The film just doesnít use its gimmick well.
Even thought I knew it was fiction, as I watched The Blair Witch Project, I got sucked into the mythology and it got under my skin. Interview With the Assassin never once made me accept that I was watching real footage. I just didnít get pulled into their story. It felt as false as the Warren Commission's report.