Nebraska's film industry? I guess there is one, based on the movie I've just viewed -- making its debut this month on DVD -- BARSTOOL COWBOY. Written, directed and produced by Mark Thimijan (shown below), a fellow born and raised in Lincoln, Neb-
raska, who has received an
Individual Artists Fellowship from the Nebraska Arts Council, "Cowboy" is his first full-length feature and he's currently at work on #2.
It's been about 60 years since I was in Lincoln, Nebraska, and I imagine the place has changed some since then. (I was a pre-teen kid, visiting my deaf-and-dumb grandmother (I know, I know -- but that's what we called the non hearing/non-speaking back then) during a summer vacation. Having been born and raised in Los Angeles, this trip proved the first time I had encountered "signing," fireflies and humidity, and I was amazed and delighted by the first two discoveries and non-stop sweaty from the third. Since then, Nebraska has held a special, if tenuous, place in my heart, and so I was wondering if my first Nebraska-bred movie experience might do something similar.
Close -- but no cigar.
Barstool Cowboy is a quiet, slightly humorous, somewhat humdrum account of a middle-aged, unemployed midwesterner (that's the guy, bearded, on the left), recently dumped by his woman. He determines to drink himself into a bender until a new young lady (accent on the young) appears and draws him into her mildly diverting, well: "Web" would be way too strong a word to use for the machinations of this femme-fatale-lite. Early in the relationship (which lasts maybe two-to-three days), girl says to guy, "Don't fall in love with me." I am not certain why, but I would almost bet my life that there has yet to be a single movie male who takes serious-
ly a woman who gives him this warning. Is this a macho thing? Must guys always interpret the statement as a dare? As you might guess, our cowboy "hero" is not about to prove the exception to the rule.