directed by Tom DiCillio
Johnny Suede has the feel of a full color, full beautiful cast version of a Jim Jarmusch film and, in fact, Suede was conceived and directed by Tom DiCillio, who was the cinematographer for such films as Permanent Vacation, Stranger than Paradise and Coffee and Cigarettes. DiCillio’s debut film is surreal and rollicking in its oddness. From the ever-wonderful Catherine Keener to the cheeky and amazing Nick Cave (yes, the Nick Cave) to the near filmicly omniscient Samuel L Jackson, Suede is almost always on point. Sure, it slips a bit here and there, but the rhythm and the spirit of the film make up for it. And so does the gravity defying pompadour of a young Bradley Pitt (is it okay if I call you Bradley, Mr. Pitt?), who plays the starry eyed, wishful musician sharing the same name as the film’s title. Things start to come together for Johnny when a pair of suede shoes fall out of the sky, but romance and a tumultuous relationship with rock legend Freak Storm (Nick Cave, you are tremendous at everything you attempt. I hate you.) threaten to cripple his sense of purpose as well as his mojo. Johnny Suede is a rare little gem that strikes an odd chord in all of us willing to find a little Suede inside ourselves.