This 1999 documentary is a gem. Two independent filmmakers followed around an even MORE "independent filmmaker" -- by all appearances anamed Mark Borchardt who works as a custodian at a Wisconsin cemetery and wants to make a short horror film called "Coven" to raise money for his dream movie. We see his problems with alcohol, dysfunctional family, slacker friends who seem to have done too much drugs, and his odd relationship with his principal backer, crusty Uncle Bill. Extras fail to show up for shooting on the horror film, and he cajoles hisaway from shopping to participate. At first "American Movie" seems to have us laughing at Mark and his acquaintances, but steadily weto laugh with him, and his unsinkable drive and optimismto seem moving, inspiring, even noble. His best friend Mike, who comes across initially like a total burnout joke from Saturday Night Live, ultimately provides a wonderful testimony to friendship (and provides the pleasant acoustic guitar soundtrack). A highly entertaining true story

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The review of this Movie prepared by David Loftus