Jim Jarmusch directs Adam Driver, Golshifteh Farahani and Barry Shabaka Henly in this week in the life of a bus driver and secret poet who reaches a creative dilemma.
We have come full circle. Jarmusch all but invented the quirky indie film where the inconsequential is given considered, almost surreal attention. And for the last 20 years he has seemed keener on reappropriating his house style to genre pieces – rambling, poetic low budget films about hitmen, cowboys and vampires… rather than immigrants, tourists and taxi drivers. In the interim small town Americana became a genre in itself. Well acted, knowingly arch slice of life ensembles became the go to “indie blockbusters” for slumming it stars and studio owned boutique production houses wanting an easy success. The Station Agent, Juno, Lonesome Jim being the better examples of a more laser targeted evolution of Jarmusch’s early legacy. So here he eventually is, back on home turf and… it is all very pleasant and diverting. Nicely performed, with some fine time spent on the pleasures of an unambitious life, meditations on the inspirations for the creation of poetry and visual rhyming couplets (not all twins are related). In no way is Paterson life altering but Jarmusch’ low key dramerdy hits the same notes as a merely decent Hitchcock thriller or a lesser Wes Craven horror film can. It is just a good example of a likeable genre by someone who more than knows what they are doing.