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Look out for more coverage of
Factotum in our magazines

THE MOVIE: Factotum

Matt Dillon • Lili Taylor • Marisa Tomei
DIRECTOR: Bent Hamer

Matt Dillon as THE CONCEPT:
Based on the acclaimed novel by Charles Bukowski, using his alter ego of Henry Chinaski, who is portrayed by Matt Dillon. Chinaski is a writer who mostly quests for booze and women that sidetrack and seduce, rather than inspire greatness. When he meets Jan (Lili Taylor) in a bar, their relationship totters between earnest connection and reflective loathing.

U.S. RELEASE: August 18 2006, Limited • Rated: R


“There are different types of drunks, and I think Hank is a maintenance drinker, it’s a marathon for him; he’s a professional in a way. It’s a tough life to live that way, but there’s a sense of humor – he’s an unapologetic drunk.”

“I’ve known Matt a long time, we’d never worked together but he felt very familiar to me and it felt like we were speaking the same language. We didn’t have time to rehearse before the film started, so we were just lucky that we just felt comfortable with each other.”

“We didn’t do a lot of rehearsal, we didn’t do a lot of takes and we didn’t do a lot of coverage. But the writing was good, the characters were good. I spent a lot of time getting into character. I didn’t want to do an imitation or an impersonation of Charles Bukowski. Even though we didn’t do a lot of rehearsal, I felt a strong connection with Lili and Marisa, and with the character I was playing.”

“I read Charles Bukowski when I was young, but like a lot of people I’ve been talking to, I put him down, so I got to pick him up again which is nice. I see (his work) very differently now. I underestimated him in some ways and I especially overlooked the working class element to his work, and how important that is and was, and how unusual it is to the States particularly, we don’t really have a lot of artists who are writing about that experience.”

“Let’s be real, the budget of the Kraft service on You, Me and Dupree probably was four times as big as the entire budget for Factotum. Sometimes you can’t pay the rent just doing movies like this, but they are sometimes the most fulfilling movies. It reminds me of making independent movies like Drugstore Cowboys back in ’89. It’s a great feeling, there’s something very fresh about it.”

“I like the freedom that independent movies give, and it’s just simple, there’s not as much money invested so there’s not as many people breathing down your neck telling you what to do. I have nothing against big movies at all, but in independent movies directors and actors can go in and serve the piece instead of serve the investment.”

Crash was a big movie made for a little budget, and I think it appealed to pretty sophisticated audiences, because they liked these big emotional moments, it stayed with them. This film I think is a little more of a character study, but I really like that, and there are emotional moments for the audience – there are funny moments and sad moments.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

Images above © IFC Films
Feature © 2006 Visual Imagination.
Not for reproduction.

Film Review, #674, September 2006 cover

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