Filmed over the course of two years, this is a character study and a portrait of homelessness like few we’ve seen. Mark is an indefatigably upbeat individual who manages to weather a situation that most would find unbearable with unbelievable levity. He seems to be a master of the double life; one minute, he’s shaving in a public bathroom, the next he’s delivering a photograph to Marc Jacobs’ office. Smiling, with silver hair slicked back, nobody would guess that he spends his nights without a roof above his head.
Of course, there’s little doubt that his is an arduous life, full of loneliness, danger, and uncertainty. As Mark says, he’s always anxious. The film does not try to shy away from this reality but nor does it view its protagonist as an object of pity. Likely this is because Wirthensohn is a friend of Mark’s; you can sense this familiarity between documentarian and subject, even if it remains largely unstated.
In spite of this familiarity, however, Mark remains somehow elusive. You never quite get a sense of how he really feels about his situation. So keen is he to avoid anything approaching self-pity that he couches his fears and disappointments in humour and self-effacement. Perhaps this is the saddest part of this extraordinary story.
|What||Homme Less film review|
|Where||Various Locations | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Leicester Square (underground)|
12 Feb 16 – 12 Mar 16, Event times vary
|Price||£determined by cinema|