Gus Van Sant is regarded as a genuine auteur, but if you set aside his true masterpieces (Drugstore Cowboy, My Own Private Idaho, Elephant), his work tends to separate into good films that aren't very characteristic (To Die For, Good Will Hunting, Milk) and characteristic films that aren't very good (Gerry, Last Days, Paranoid Park). Filling out the latter category is this moody, tiresomely whimsical tale of a death-obsessed teen (Henry Hopper, son of Dennis) who commiserates with the ghost of a Japanese kamikaze pilot (Ryo Kase) and falls in love with a terminally ill girl (Mia Wasikowska). The young sweethearts amuse themselves by donning steampunk outfits and crashing the funerals of dead children, which may seem quirky and sweet if you can disregard the awful grief of such gatherings; the problem is that, once you manage this, the main characters' grief doesn't register either. With Jane Adams and Schuyler Fisk. (93 min.)
Director: Gus Van Sant
Producer: Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Bryce Howard, David Cress, Eric Black and Frank Mancuso Jr.
Cast: Henry Hopper, Mia Wasikowska, Ryo Kase, Schuyler Fisk, Jane Adams, Chin Han and Lusia Strus