Beautiful Losers DVD Review

beautifullosersdvd.jpgA lot of people see art as a pretentious, high-brow pursuit that is the exclusive domain of snooty rich people, but the truth is, creativity comes from all walks of life. Creative people are driven to follow their artistic impulses at any cost, and quite often they must suffer and sacrifice in order to make it happen. Aaron Rose has spent much of his life searching for these diamonds in the rough, and as an art curator in 2004 he put together a traveling art exhibit called Beautiful Losers, featuring the work of a number of do-it-yourself artists. The documentary of the same name originally started as a companion to the art show, but grew to become something more.

Co-directed by Joshua Leonard (The Blair Witch Project), this film is a moving portrait of the artists and an inspirational tribute to the creative spirit. Subjects include filmmaker Harmony Korine, skateboarder Ed Templeton, graffit artist Barry McGee, filmmaker and album cover designer Mike Mills, and creator of the Obama Hope posters, Shepard Fairey. Each artist has their own interesting backstory and quirky personality, and the movie has its share of heartfelt moments, particularly in regards to the late Margaret Kilgallen.

As you might expect from a movie about artists, there are plenty of gorgeous images on display here, but the film is also quite beautifully shot and ends up being a work of art unto itself. It does delve a little bit into the tricky relationship between art and commerce, but mostly it’s about the way that artists come together to support and encourage each other. Despite the wide variety of styles and mediums that are featured, they all share that same creative spark. I came away from this movie feeling inspired, and I would say it is a definite must-see for anyone that has even the slightest creative bone in their body. Highly recommended.