Meet the man strong enough to bend a
penny with just his fingers, Stanless Steel reaches middle age, career disappointments and difficult personal relationships that
begin to test his strengths and force him
to struggle with the weaknesses around
him -- including his own.
Written By: Zachary Levy
Directed By: Zachary Levy
Where to start with Strongman. This is a unique film that just seems to skirt any genre in the classic sense. Clearly it's a Documentary but is it a Comedy? Maybe. At times. The catch is that the Comedy could also be looked at as serious and not so funny after all. Is it a total serious-fest? Well... not really because even the serious parts have elements of comedy. Maybe not intentional but none the less present. The one thing I can say on a personal level is that a strange quality exists in Strongman that will leave it's mark on you. How you process the feeling you're left with ends up being the essence of the film. Confused yet? You won't be when you watch the film. Strongman offers up one of those "You had to be there" moments.
There's something strange that happens when you watch the struggles of another in a reality based setting. Makes you realize that you're not the only person on the planet that maybe you didn't have things quite go the way you wanted. When you add a pretty amazing ability into the mix and find out that person still struggles with life, himself, friends and family... you begin to realize that maybe a perfect life was never the wish you wanted. How boring or uninteresting would that be? Stanless Steel, in my opinion should have been born 100+ years ago. Maybe then people would actually stop and consider just how cool what he does... is! But now, in our fast world of super sonic tech and attention spans, as fast as the stunts Stan performs, it's actually a wonder he manages to work at all, in any form! That in itself is a serious feat of drive and determination. Strongman paints a picture of a person and his family trying to find their place in a world that just doesn't seem to care. A sideshow in a sideshow kind of world. For me, the real treat of this film is not Stan's physical power, rather his mental stubbornness. The fact he still chugs on and still considers himself amazing! The fact his family and friends still cheer him on knowing he's fighting an uphill battle. That is true humanity and is what drives this film and makes you watch till the very end.
On the technical side of Strongman I don't really have much to comment on. Since it's reality based it's just what you'd expect. I can touch on the editing though. A lot of footage must have been recorded over the years and the editor(s) did an amazing job putting it all together to make it flow. My only real complaint is that the movie felt about 15 or 20 minutes longer than it needed to be. Maybe it was just me, or the weather... who knows. I just feel the same story and feeling could have been done in a little less time. Such a small complaint and the only reason I'm writing it is because I have to write something to offset how much I enjoyed the film!
Zachary Levy has done an amazing job presenting this film. You, as a reader need to track it down and see for yourself. You won't be sorry. My only "Real" complaint is that I didn't get an autograph from Stan himself. That would have totally made my year!
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