The World of Z | Chicago Reader

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Rated NR · 80 minutes · 2011

In this ingeniously structured documentary, Brad Besser and Vince Clemente introduce Chicagoan Zbigniew Fiks as a charming and creative eccentric, then gradually expose his frightening struggle with bipolar disorder. As a result the video registers more as a character study than as a case study, presenting the formal nuances of Fiks's art (poetry, sculpture, and obsessively compiled video diaries) rather than focusing on its therapeutic value. Besser and Clemete are carefully observant of Chicago's working-class Polish community and sensitive to the everyday compassion (and frequent exasperation) of Fiks's family and friends: a characteristic scene shows Fiks wearing down the manager of the small printing press that makes his poetry books until the guy agrees to take a break from work and drink cheap brandy with him. In English and subtitled Polish.
Director: Brad Besser and Vince Clemente
Producer: Brad Besser, Vince Clemente and Dan Billups

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