Magazine article Screen International

Andrew Neel, King Kelly

Magazine article Screen International

Andrew Neel, King Kelly

Article excerpt

The New York-based director makes his fictional feature debut with King Kelly, a racy satire about young people's obsession with the Internet.

After premiering at SXSW, the film made its European premiere this week at the Zurich Film Festival.

Why did you want to make a film about internet-obsessed culture?

I've always been interested in the internet and what it's doing to us. We as a culture in the developed world are going through one of the most radical changes in terms of how we live in modern history, even much more intensely than the industrial revolution in terms of the rate at which it has happened. I felt as though as kind of self-mediated reality and these camera phones to show that immediately on the internet and the rise of social media.

In addition to that, I feel that in America we have suffered in the last 10 years an incredibly difficult period, and in part that is because of a narcissistic tendency in our culture. That kind of narciscism has created some real problems, a lack of perspective about who we are.

Why go the satirical route?

I love satire. I have a copy of Candide by my bed. When I'm feeling down I open it up so that I can have a chuckle. Sometimes the best way to deal with a really horrific reality is satire.

How did the crowd here in Zurich react?

The screening was on par with my best screening at SXSW. The two were equal because people were laughing. I wanted people to laugh, and if you're uptight it might be hard for you to laugh. …

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