Festival Updates Interview: John Hindman of ARLEN FABER

Faith Salie interviews ARLEN FABER writer/director John Hindman and cast members Jeff Daniels and Lou Taylor Pucci in the Sundance Channel Studio. Presented by Honda, The Power of Dreams.

WATCH more with John Hindman here.

U.S.A., 2008, 95 min., color

Arlen Faber (Jeff Daniels) is the reclusive author of Me and God, a book that has redefined spirituality for an entire generation. On the eve of the twentieth anniversary of his still-wildly-popular book, Arlen continues to be sought after as the man with all the answers. Then his life collides with those of Elizabeth (Lauren Graham), a single mom raising her seven-year-old son, and Kris (Lou Taylor Pucci), a young man fresh out of rehab who is searching for meaning. Both Elizabeth and Kris are hopeful that Arlen has answers for them, but the truth is that he hasn’t got a clue. In ARLEN FABER, writer/director John Hindman’s dialogue is clever and insightful but not enough to eclipse the underlying sweetness of his film. He brings together an eccentric group of characters and allows them to work their way through this unique and ultimately inspiring story. It helps that the talented cast have an engaging chemistry that draws us into their cinematic lives. The emotional walls between our main characters are high—but not insurmountable, so the pleasure is in watching them try to get over them. If romance gives ARLEN FABERits heart, then its spine is the things that make life complicated—heroes that let us down, life not giving us what we deserve, and fame not being all it’s cracked up to be. —JOHN COOPER