Winner of the editing award at Sundance, Penny Lane’s Nuts mixes documentary with animation in telling the story of real life American would be doctor, John Romulus Brinkley, a beginning of the 20th century master charlatan claiming to heal almost anything while paving his own way into the American dream. We follow the account and peculiar trail of a singular character on his way to become a pioneer of radio and later venturing into high profile politics.

With its swift editing and fine production value, Nuts is part of the wave of entertainment documentaries. The process certainly helps to find an audience and buyers for distribution. Still it raises questions for its significance as a documentary.

Nuts is appealing, we learn a few things, it tells a story, we are entertained. Yet, most of it is based on intended partial truth presented as facts (in the first half) that resume a professional charlatan’s career by deliberately using demagogy to buy time for what shouldn’t be a full length film in content even if it is by no mean a boring adventure.

The show must go on.


13 nov. 3PM Concordia – J.A. de Sève (with English Subs)

19 nov. 3:30 PM Cinémathèque québécoise (With French Subs)