(Matt Johnson, U. S./Canada). 94 minutes. Rating: NNN
Matt Johnson’s follow-up to The Dirties is an odd choice for Hot Docs: it’s not a documentary, but a conspiracy thriller set in the late 60s that follows a pair of junior CIA agents (writer/director Johnson and his Dirties co-star Owen Williams) as they attempt to out a Russian mole at NASA and wind up faking the Apollo 11 moon landing.
Johnson and his crew shot clandestinely on real locations (including NASA’s Texas complex and Mission Control itself) to achieve a compelling documentary effect, and the story’s conceit is clever enough that it’s easy to forgive the fact that Johnson is repeating the exact same story beats of The Dirties in a new context, and even playing the same excitable, morally ambivalent character.
It’s a fun movie, and Johnson’s comic timing is as sharp as his technical facility. But I really hope he does something different on his next picture. NW Apr 29, 9:45 pm, Bloor Hot Docs