Friday, April 9th, 2010
There was anticipation in the air in the first of a three night series of press screenings in Los Angeles, after having made a major splash at Sundance. Undoubtedly, Banksy’s EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP presents a truly engaging story about some of the artists behind one of this generation’s most exciting movements in our culture – street art. However, much of the film, directed by Banksy, focuses on Thierry Guetta, aka Mr. Brainwash. Only an artist with the utter swagger as Banksy would be comfortable enough to actually elevate a newcomer like MBW, eclipsing himself in the process. Well crafted, the documentary explores Banksy’s legacy and contextualizes many events in ‘street art’ history, chronicling of some of the most important moments in Banksy’s career, as well as others, like Shepard Fairey. It’s both a comical glance at how art is about perception – and now more than ever – showmanship – while also poignantly substantiating the passion at the core of this form of expression.
The film is uniquely entertaining. With our highest recommendation, it will be very worthwhile seeking it out in your local market as it rolls out. It opens on April 16 in many cities across the USA.