An ingenious novel about art and revenge, insisting on your dreams and hitting on your doctor, told in the form of 80 movie reviews In near-future America, film critic Noah Body uploads his reviews to an underread content aggregator. His job is dreary routine: watch, seethe, pan. He dreams of making his own film, free of the hackery of commercial cinema. Faced with writing on lousy movies for a website that no one reads, Noah smuggles into his reviews depictions of his troubled life on the margins. Amid his movie reviews, we learn that his apartment in the vintage slum of Miniature Aleppo has been stripped of furniture after his wife ran off with his best friend—who Noah believes has possessed his body. He’s in the middle of an escalating grudge match against a vending machine tycoon with a penchant for violence. And he’s infatuated with a doctor who has diagnosed him with a “disease of thought.” Exhausted by days spent watching flicks featuring monks with a passion for rock and roll and slashers featuring rampaging hairdressers, Noah is determined to create his own masterpiece: a filmed meditation on art-with-a-capital-A, written by, directed by, and starring himself. Set in a wildly imaginative and uncannily familiar world of nanny states and extreme rationing, Safe Zones and New Koreas, A Short Film About Disappointment is an uproarious story of trying to keep it together in turbulent times. Joshua Mattson is a debut novelist with a rotten wit and the creative vision of a hyperactive child.
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