Adapted from Blake Nelson’s best selling novel and shot masterfully in director Gus Van Sant’s hometown of Portland, Paranoid Park hinges on an act of acute violence. Alex (Gabe Nevins) is a confused schoolboy skater whose life hits the bricks following his role in the death of a local security guard. The film itself, then, is largely told from Alex’s perspective as he goes back and forth in his mind and notebook in an attempt to vindicate his tainted conscious and make sense of why and how things happened the way they did.
This is a mystifying and moving, and one of Van Sant’s better films. Good Will Hunting? Not quite. But for such a question to prompt a pause for thought says a lot. See this.
Paranoid Park (2007), directed by Gus Van Sant, is available on blu-ray disc and DVD, Certificate 15.