Exit Through The Gift Shop – A Banksy Film
Banksy’s first feature film is a wonderfully unexpected examination of the difference between artist and entrepreneur. Instead of making his own documentary about the street art movement, Banksy takes someone else’s attempt and shows us how it became a bittersweet reminder that the divisions between commerce and “authentic” art are still there, even if we don’t always see them. The film is mostly about Thierry Guetta a.k.a. Mr. Brainwash, a bumbling Frenchman who has lived his entire life through others. When he was riding the coattails of street art at the turn of the century, he managed – by filming it – to capture the movement when it was at its most mysterious. After Guetta tried to make the street art film and failed miserably, he turned to street art and succeeded mostly through synthesizing lessons from true pioneers and marketing himself much better. Banksy, on the other hand, took the footage and told that story. (In theory, at least – chances are the whole ‘documentary’ side of things is actually a classically Banksy-ish hoax.)
EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP - A BANKSY FILM | Directed by Banksy (USA, UK 2010) with Thierry Guetta, Shepard Fairey, Banksy and Rhys Ifans (narration). Opens October 21.