starring Max Minghella, Sophia Myles, John Malkovich, Anjelica Huston
screenplay by Daniel Clowes
directed by Terry Zwigoff
by Bill Chambers SPOILER WARNING IN EFFECT. When Daniel Clowes and Terry Zwigoff sat down to adapt the former's graphic serial Ghost World for the screen, they divided up the task generationally, if you will, with the younger Clowes writing the Enid parts and Zwigoff writing the Seymour parts, which themselves have no correlative in the graphic novel. Clowes flew solo on the semi-autobiographical script for the pair's latest collaboration, Art School Confidential, and the main problem with it is that it's all Enid and no Seymour. In fact, the film is so relentlessly glib that the Enid doppelgänger who pops up now and again seems gratuitous--and moreover belabours a Ghost World comparison (much like the extended cameo from an unbilled Steve Buscemi) that only finds Art School Confidential wanting. The closest thing the movie has to a moral compass is Joel Moore's Bardo, one of those career students who becomes the Virgil to freshman Dante Jerome (Max Minghella). Adrift in a sea of poseurs, Jerome struggles in vain to win over his contemporaries, including comely life-drawing model Audrey (Sophia Myles). Meanwhile, a serial strangler trolling the campus for victims not only becomes Jerome's unwitting muse, but also provides one of his roommates, Vince (Ethan Suplee), with fodder for his thesis film.