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TarnationTarnation probably isn’t the type of film you’d think that someone would make out of home movies over a couple of decades using iMovie. But then again, Jonathan Caouette doesn’t seem to be a typical person. Tarnation is a very personal documentary that is utterly compelling and amazing to watch. Every now and then while watching I thought that I was part of an elaborate cinematic joke. The film just seemed to be too perfect, too well-constructed to be a documentary. But it wasn’t fiction, as you could see the people in the footage growing up and growing old. There are lots of stories around about how much the film cost, but in some ways it’s beside the point. It’s an amazing film no matter what it cost to make. Intensely personal, the film is the story of Jonathan Caouette and his mother, Renee all told through the prism of video, music and family photos. It’s a wonderful, harrowing and heartbreaking cinematic experience that is probably best viewed in a theatre if you have a chance. After pouring so much out I wonder what Caouette will do next. But maybe that’s a good thing, now that he’s put it all out there he can start fresh.

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