Film Review – Kurt Vonnegut: Unstuck in Time

Kurt Vonnegut

Most biographical documentaries approach their subject in a fairly standard and linear way. Normally, running through their life and work in chronological order, with friends, family and experts on hand to add some insight and move proceedings along. Especially when the focal point is no longer with us. Kurt Vonnegut: Unstuck in Time comes at it from a unique direction and perspective. It’s a film 39 years in the making and all the better for it.

Kurt Vonnegut was a controversial and much-loved figure in the literature world. Especially amongst young inquisitive minds. He took his traumatic wartime experiences as a prisoner of war and channelled them into his work; choosing to focus on the hilarity which can be found in even the darkest places. He made his name with the publication of his anti-war masterpiece, Slaughterhouse-Five, in 1969. He embraced the fame and income stream this ensured, but oscillated between highs and lows throughout his life.

Kurt Vonnegut: Unstuck in Time is a remarkable documentary about a writer like no other. Robert B. Weide’s long-term friendship with the great man has produced a bountiful variety of rich footage and personal insight. Co-directed with Don Argott, we’re afforded a glimpse into the manic mind of a genius who was both ahead of his time and daringly adventurous. A fitting tribute to a man who changed the way countless people look at the world.

Kurt Vonnegut: Unstuck in Time is out in cinemas from 22 July.

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