This was an interesting movie to watch for me, but I warn you going in, it may not be for the “uninitiated” any more than your typical screening of the Rocky Horror Picture show would be enjoyable for someone who either hadn’t seen, or worse, didn’t like that particular movie.
The Big Lebowski was the first cult film of the “Internet era”, and I recall being right there in the early 2000s as the movement was gathering steam. I was immediately drawn to it myself because I had already liked the movie initially, but then discovered, like thousands of others, just how insanely re-watchable and quotable (to an extreme and to some, highly annoying extent).
Philosophy student Eddie Chung, the director of this film, also noticed, and happened to be around at just the right time to film the phenomenon.
In 2002 Will Russell and Scott Shuffit were just two ordinary vendors at a tattoo convention quoting their favorite movie, when it occurred to them that it might be a fun idea to host a small gathering of like minded friends at a local bowling alley and call it “Lebowski Fest”. And so it began, now nearly fifteen years later, that same fest draws thousands of people each year in different cities across the globe.
This movie tells the story of Lebowski Fest, and explores the sub culture of Cult Movie fans in depth. It’s a diverse collection of people spotlighted in this movie; everyone from intellectual film theorists to drunk college kids looking for another excuse to drink in their pajamas and bathrobe.
The peak comes at a 2005 fest in Los Angeles when none other than The Dude himself, Jeff Bridges shows up to hang out and sing a few songs. It all looked like marvelous fun. That said, watching this movie through the eyes of someone who is not an uber fan of the film, I can see where this could get rather tedious, real fast.
For those like me who are huge fans though, it’s a cool glimpse into the crazy world of movie fandom to levels beyond what most of us would consider normal and/or healthy.
The Achievers gets a three out of five: SATISFYING.