documentary about a woman and her recluse father. it reminded me of pop & me, a documentary about a father and son who bond while on a trip around the world. there’s much to be learned from the title – first, it’s bruce and me, not dad and me. seidler calls her father by his first name and this reflects their emotional distance and the “grown up” childhood she lived. both her parents were hippies so she traveled the world and tripped on mdma with her dad at a young age. second, there’s a documentary by agnes varda called gleaners and i…notice the grammar difference in the two titles. to me, the use of “I” over “me” indicates a subtle difference in subject. with bruce and me the implication is that the film is about bruce and me. with the gleaners and i the implication is that the gleaners and i are together. “the gleaners and i do this and that” vs. “this film is about bruce and me.” if you’re being grammatically correct there are limitations to I and Me and this reveals something about the respective films. the gleaners and i links the gleaners of the fields and varda as a gleaner of images in life. in bruce and me the film is about each individual – “bruce” and “me.” i hope that’s somewhat clear.
anyway, bruce is a vietnam vet turned hippie who now lives off the grid, doesn’t pay taxes, and juggles several identities. his stories about meeting jim jones or stealing vw bugs from dealers are entertaining, but it’s also interesting to see how seidler gets along with her father. there’s plenty of material here to reflect upon your own parental relationships if you choose to. it’s a good documentary.