For many, Superman and Hollywood both represent truth, justice and the American way. However both have proven themselves to be fallible over the years. Superman is nothing more than a fictional ideal that is just as fake as the Hollywood lifestyle commonly portrayed in the media.
Allen Coulter exposes both of these phenomena for what they are in his latest film, “Hollywoodland.” The film opens with the investigation of George Reeves’ (Ben Affleck) unexpected suicide. Reeves, best known for his role as television’s Superman in the 1950s, also had a tumultuous personal life that led some to speculate that his murder was the result of foul play. Private investigator Louis Simo (Adrien Brody) is hired by Reeves’ mother to re-examine the case.
The movie alternates between Simo’s ongoing investigation and flashbacks of Reeves. The parallel plots are edited in such a way that they switch from one to the other whenever information is revealed. This type of flow keeps the audience engaged and builds momentum toward the film’s conclusion.
The Reeves plot is slightly more interesting, with its portrayal of the actor’s problematic career. Despite his success as Superman, Reeves could never separate himself from the character he played. One scene has Reeves face to face with an actor’s worst nightmare – a fan that can’t separate fiction from reality. In this case it is a kid holding a loaded gun, curious to see if the bullets will harmlessly bounce of Reeves like they do on television.
Unfortunately, Simo’s side of the plot falters toward the end. Simo comes up with three possible scenarios. Reeves was either shot by himself, his fianc