- Director: Patrick Wang
- Writer: Patrick Wang
- Producer: Daryl Freimark; Matt Miller; Patrick Wang
A Bread Factory, Part One: For the Sake of Gold
A Bread Factory, Part Two: Walk with Me a While
Patrick Wang has a habit of letting his camera roll on and on...his previous film, In the Family has a runtime of 219 minutes.
A Bread Factory [parts 1 & 2] runs for 242 minutes...4 hours long...that really is a big ask! The big question is: Is it worth spending that amount of time [and money] in company of these characters?
Put it it this way...if Mr Wang had entered the editing suite, hellbent on cutting his film down to 2 [and, possibly, a wee bit] hours...then, there would be smiles all round. Because...there is so much goodness in these two films...but, unfortunately and infuriatingly, - the good bits are surrounded by too much dough!
Mr Wang certainly has something to say about all kinds of artistic endeavours, practitoners and institutions...with 'perfromance art' [seriously] getting it in the neck. Hey...everyone has the right to their opinion, everyone has the right to compliment or criticise [especially if they had to pay for the pleasure/displeasure]...and, let's be truthful here, the world would be a thoroughly drab place if everyone thought the same. So...let Mr Wang speak...even if he does so at length!
The 'absurd' and the 'mundane' are not usual bed partners, they are in this here tale. The little 'peculiarities' are [mostly] charming and serve as a foil to the financial crisis that has beset this arts centre...however, in part 2, they really become a little too much. And, with the overly-lengthy performance of Hecuba...this second instalment really does become a bit of a chore.
There is some much to like and there's too much that will [simply] drive you up the wall. No faulting the performances, Tyne Daly delivers a solid, stalwart character...hellbent against change...well, everything changes - especially art. The only thing that needed changing with A Bread Factory Parts 1 & 2 was...the runtime!
After 40 years of running their community arts space, The Bread Factory, Dorothea and Greta are suddenly fighting for survival when a celebrity couple--performance artists from China--come to Checkford and build an enormous complex down the street catapulting big changes in their small town.