Keep the River On Your Right (USA)

directed by: David Shapiro; Laurie Shapiro
Keep the River On Your Right
Diane says: "Here are two problems I have with this film: The impetus for what happens in this docu comes from the filmmakers, as opposed to, say STARTUP.COM and SOUND AND FURY. Schneebaum says "I'm really mad at the film crew. They're forcing me to do things I don't want to do." I don't like that, or at least didn't like it in this docu. I felt that I had very little objective material. It was a lot of Schneebaum explaining himself, or translating his conversations, or interpreting local customs. I also thought the film was too unfocussed, or jumpy. " 2 cats
Ellen says: "I thought the subject matter was interesting, but I did have a small problem with subject of the film, Tobias Scheebaum. I had the sense that he was doing some amount of posturing and I wasn't sure where, as a result, the story may have been embellished. He spent too much time protesting that he didn't want to go back to Peru but the film crew was making him - when you're 78 it seems to me that you don't have to do anything you don't want to do! The fact that someone did what he did, trekked alone into the Peruvian jungle in the 1950's and lived with a tribe of cannibals was fascinating and amazing. It was dismaying, however, to discover the current plight of the tribe - wearing Western clothes, watching satellite TV, and drinking beer. So much for Western progress! "
Laura says: "Tobias Schneebaum is a fascinating subject. Artistic, intellectually curious, a great storyteller, he is above all a humanist with a spiritually uplifting outlook on life. The Shapiros not only found a compelling, charismatic subject, but a unique way to capture it, shaping their film the way a great conversationalist talks, playfully following side threads that always weave back into the big picture." 5 cats

For Laura's complete review: ""
Michael says: "KEEP THE RIVER ON YOUR RIGHT focuses on Tobias Schneebaum, artist, anthropologist, homosexual, cannibal? Schneebaum walked into the jungle of Peru in the 1950's and lived with a tribe of cannibals for 7 months. In this fascinating documentary, in his late 70's, Schneebaum returns to that jungle as well as to a tribe in New Guinea where he lived for an extended time in order to find himself once more. Fascinating and fun. "
Renee says: "I liked River, but I did find that it meandered, or took its time, to say relatively little. That said, I still liked the fact that the film provoked me to think about what inner demons caused him to roam and explore. Perhaps more attention given to that would have been interesting, but perhaps introspection isn't Schneebaum's strong suit. It took five years from the time the directors approached him to the time they left for the sounded like a lot of fits and starts to get this made. They also told the audience that Schneebaum at 80(?), for the first time in his life, is living with a male companion."

Robin says: "One of the many joys of this film is to see Tobias's reluctance to take the journey replaced with a real satisfaction and happiness for having made the enormous effort. Almost miraculously, in both Peru and Borneo, he meets old friends from his time in the jungle decades before. Most striking is his reunion with Aipat, an Asmat tribesman who was Tobias's best friend and lover those many years ago. The wash of emotions that Tobias feels are palpably depicted and both gladness and sadness come through. Another poignant moment happens when Schneebaum returns to Peru and meets, again, a tribesman who remembers him from 45 years ago. It's an amazing story all around." 5 cats

For Robin's complete review: ""