American country singer Blaze Foley gets the redneck red carpet treatment by admirer/director Ethan Hawke here.
It’s an uneven little feature, and yet, Hawke’s admiration for the unorthodox musician comes through in each and every frame.
Clearly influenced by directors from his own acting career — Hawke uses the simple, independent flair from filmmaker Richard Linklater (Dazed & Confused) and forms his own laid-back directorial story-first style.
The Oscar-nominated actor proves a bit rough around the edges, but then, so is his subject.
Blaze Foley, played by Ben Dickey with full embodiment and grace, is at times both captivating and unceremoniously boring.
I’m not sure Foley was an enigma worth a biopic, but then again, there’s something pretty charming about documenting a life that was more regular than A-list.
Hawke’s feature is earnest and unflinching, meandering and melancholy.
It won’t win any awards this year, and is certainly a mixed bag. But is had begrudgingly won my respect.