Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father (2008)
All right. Finally last night, I saw Dear Zachary on MSNBC. You can see it again on the 14th, check the time.
This is a amateurish documentary from Kurt Kuenne. I heard about this movie from the guys on /Film and Metacritic which gave it an 81. I think the rating is a bit overrated.
If you don’t know the story, I will try to sum it up as succinct as possible. Kuenne was intending to make a movie about his best friend, Andrew Bagby who was gun down by his psychotic ex-lover, Shirley Turner. During the lengthy court battle, Kurt realizes that Shirley is pregnant with Andrew’s baby. He changed the direction of the doc to make it a personal letter to Zachary about the father he never knew.
I have some problems with this movie as a whole. First, it was broadcast on MSNBC. Not the best place to a supposed “great documentary.” Kurt Kruenne as a filmmaker was horrible. The execution was deplorable with the jump away cuts, the endless talking heads, the manic recounting of events, and so much more.
Kuenne was seeming a bit pompous and arrogant when you get to see the first picture of Zachary, when he was born. Wow. Very egotistical.
The “serious music” was so over the top. It’s not funny. It was annoying. The sound effects were unnecessary. It distracted from the subject at hand, it was supposed to be letter to Zachary.
I was told that there was supposed to a “twist” in the story. I knew what was coming, so I didn’t have the same emotional impact as the critic had with this movie. It was a sad ending, but it’s not uncommon for that to happen. When you see the documentary, you will understand what I mean.
My opinion is that there is a poignant, heartbreaking story inside a poorly crafted documentary.
My rating: ** stars.