Tribeca 2023: Chasing Chasing Amy

Directed by: Sav Rodgers
Distributed by: TBA

Written by Alexander Reams


Within the first four minutes of Sav Rodger’s shockingly juvenile documentary on the so-called “problematic nature” of “Chasing Amy,” there are talking heads who go at 100 miles a minute just to get each word of their clearly scripted PR lines out before anyone realizes it’s just the continued facetious nature of Hollywood and shows what is wrong with the industry today. Sav Rodgers opens the doc with a TED talk on the film, which despite its emotional rawness, feels rather lazy to open with a piece that explains the entirety of “Chasing Chasing Amy” without any of the nuance that can be captured through a film. Which loses the spirit of “Amy” before Rodgers goes into a pseudo-shot-recreation that feels not only appreciative but respectful of Smith and his work, a motif that seems to be in short supply in the film industry.

“Jack’s Music Shoppe” and Smith’s iconic “Secret Stash” make early appearances and the love for Smith is Rodgers’s strongest narrative captured in the film. The first meet between Rodgers and Smith is cool to see, but it rings inconsequential after some time. Even the presence of Smith is fun for a time, but there’s only so far that can take the story. And by the time Rodgers wrings out every bit of “juice” out from the talking heads the damage is done. Any chance at a proper tribute to Smith and his work feels lost in the messy social discussion that Rodgers tries desperately to implement into the film. It’s unfortunate but the current trend of reevaluation of past films through modern social lenses does have a hold on the industry. “Chasing Amy” is probably Smith’s best work and the criticisms thrown at it are ignorant at best, at worst it’s surface-level criticism on a film that goes so much further than that, and deserves more than this documentary.

“Chasing Chasing Amy” Trailer

“Chasing Chasing Amy” was screened as part of the 2023 edition of the Tribeca Film Festival.

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