Release date:October 27, 2010
Directors:Kerthy Fix, Gail O'Hara
Songwriter Stephin Merritt always seems to have a Chihuahua on his lap. Performing with the Magnetic Fields since 1991, he has composed some of his generation's most intellectually incisive, whimsical, witty and acerbic music (Merritt has been compared to Cole Porter for his sophisticated use of language). A dedicated, growing army of admirers flocks to the group's concerts and makes Merritt an odd sort of anti-celebrity, one who is happiest not being recognized, whiling away the hours in gay bars on either coast (his favorite place for writing music) or spending a good part of the day soaking up obscure movie classics. Ten years in the making, the film follows the famously grumpy Merritt and explores his relationship with Claudia Gonson, his creative collaborator and the band's manager. It paints a portrait of an artist whose music brilliantly holds up a mirror to the fears, joys, and insecurities of his time.