Theory of Achievement (1991)

Genres - Comedy Drama  |   Run Time - 20 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Judd Blaise

Theory of Achievement, a short film by director Hal Hartley, is a droll look at a group of young Brooklynites grappling with the great issues: aesthetics, romance, and real estate. Bob, a broke, aspiring writer, takes advantage of his girlfriend's absence to enter the real estate business. He sublets her apartment to a group of struggling artists, convincing them that Williamsburg, Brooklyn is destined to be "the new art capital of the world." Amongst the tenants are Hartley regulars William Sage and Elina Lowensohn, portraying a couple arguing over the husband's refusal to quit his uninspiring job and follow his dream of becoming a songwriter. Bob and the tenants bond in their mutual poverty and ennui, discussing art, drinking beer, and playing the accordion. All is well, until Bob's girlfriend returns to town early and discovers his scheme. The short is one of three made by Hartley in 1991, along with Ambition and Surviving Desire. All are available on a single videocassette.



aesthetics, apartment, girlfriend, real-estate, romance, writing