So late last night I suddenly realized, gosh, I’ve hardly read about Sundance this year. Like, OK, it isn’t Cannes (shrug), but I am pretty sure we all used to take Sundance a little more seriously. Maybe I just feel that way because I really like the Sundance catalogue, with all its loom-woven Navajo shawls and hammered jewelry. Who knows.
Uh, anyway, guess what. There is a documentary about Chris Crocker. And guess what else. It premiered at Sundance. It’s a nominee for the Grand Jury Prize. And guess what else. HBO has acquired the Chris Crocker documentary. (Chris Crocker: “You guys love me for me—you guys hate me for me—and thank you!”)
And the movie, Me @ The Zoo is getting, uh, really sound reviews. Not uniformly positive reviews, but… I mean, it really is being treated like a real, honest-to-blog documentary film. The Onion‘s Nathan Rabin gives the movie a solid B. At least one reviewer calls it “fast, frantic, and at times unbearably sad,” but warns that the movie is shallow and lacking in intimacy. In fact, critics seem to agree that while the movie has too much “Chris Crocker,” it doesn’t have quite enough Chris Crocker. Get it?
Few people better illustrate the evolving nature of celebrity and the blurring between fame and notoriety better than Chris Crocker. Best known as The “Leave Britney Alone!” Guy, Crocker’s YouTube videos have been viewed hundreds of millions of times, but among those viewers, the ratio of hate-to-love or annoyance-to-appreciation likely tips to the negative.
Sometimes flamboyant and shrill, but occasionally exhibiting the flair of a natural improv comedian, Crocker has milked his Internet persona well beyond any logical lifespan, seemingly never breaking character.
This little news snippet first arrived in the form of an interview Crocker did with Queerty. In it, Crocker is thoughtful and articulate. He stresses that his “Leave Britney Alone!” viral video, while over-the-top, was never intended as insincere. He seems really reconciled—not at ease, necessarily, but reconciled—in terms of how his online persona is/isn’t split from his real-life persona.
Then, when the interviewer finally gets around to asking Chris Crocker about gay porn, Crocker is already kind of exasperated. “I don’t know what’s going on with that right now, to be honest,” he says simply.