Leading up to the publication of his second novel, Philip finds himself filled with constant rage. Between the constant chatter and noise of New York and his deteriorating relationship with his girlfriend, Ashley, Philip wants nothing to do with the promotion of his novel. When his idol, Ike Zimmerman, extends an invitation to stay with him in his isolated home as refuge, Philip immediately agrees, anxious to be mentored by a man he has always admired. Alex Ross Perry's Listen Up Philip is a up-close and personal look into a narcissistic man whose dedication to his art has led him to alienate anyone and everyone he cared about. A film about an artist's pursuit, Listen Up Philip creates one of the most intricate and impressive films about social isolation i've seen in a while. Philip is not a character who garners sympathy from the audience but as the narrative unfolds one can't help but feel sympathetic for him, a man whose pursuit of greatness has left him isolated. Similar to his previous film, A Color Wheel, Alex Ross Perry subverts viewer expectations by spending long stretches of the film with other characters, most notably Philip's girlfriend, Ashley, showing the effect Philip's actions have on these characters even when he isn't physically there. The way the film jumps from perspective to perspective works beautifully, giving the film a unique and fresh strucuture that never falls into various indie tropes or becomes overly-sentimental. Incredibly funny, narcissistic, and profound, Alex Ross Perry's Listen Up Philip is a fascinating look into the selfishness that exists in every creative individual, capturing the impact it has on any and everyone around them.
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