TV’s most famous conspiracy theory

Television director Allen Coulter has turned to TV’s most famous conspiracy theory as the subject of his first feature, Hollywoodland.

Actor George Reeves, famous for playing Superman on TV in the 1950s couldn’t deflect a speeding bullet, and the film examines the theories around the star’s apparent suicide.

Unfortunately, basing the film on real people and events hinders the plot, unlike similarly themed films L.A. Confidential and Chinatown, which rip into Hollywood’s high society without fear of reprisals. By the end of the film we are no clearer to understanding what happened to Reeves.

The casting is also a weakness. On the plus side, the role of an alcoholic Superman suits Ben Affleck’s self-knowing narcissism perfectly. But the anxious personae of Adrien Brody doesn’t seem to fit the steely LA private eye Louis Simo, out to make a killing on the back of this high profile investigation.

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