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From: Benjamin Schuman Date Added: 1/14/2014 9:33:42 PM

So many things to recommend here.

It has the appearance and trappings of so many indie "hipster" movies - Brooklyn, Austin, crisp digital photography, low-key dialog, quirky characters in quirky bands - but it's miles ahead of its peers. It's good to look at, its swiftly paced, and it actually has a story, which is a rarity these days.

In its first few minutes, it captures the feel of young, arts-obsessed ("hipster") Brooklyn perhaps better than any other movie that I've seen. In the mere ten minutes or so that it spends in Brooklyn, it captures both the beautiful and the soul-crushing qualities of the people and the place.

I've never been to Austin, so to me, the Austin section (most of the movie) worked as a travelog. Countless movies seem to be made in Austin, but none have made the place itself - the landscape, the buildings, the quality of the light - seem like a character quite like this one did.

The movie is a bit of a "Candide" type story - an individual's rambling journey of self-exploration - and those stories can tend to get boring. But this movie's pace is so quick, its images so casually well-crafted, and its characters so vivid that it remains compelling throughout.

It's a violent movie, but it treats the violence much like its main character does - as something brief and disorienting that you must run away from. In lesser hands, the violence might have been hard to take and the character might have been grating, but in Loves Her Gun, the violence is palatable and the character is compellingly empathetic.

There are more little things to commend - like any good "journey," story, it's full of colorful side characters, but they never sidetrack the movie itself.

Sometimes you see small movies and think, "That was good, but I know why it won't see wider distribution." With this one, I couldn't for the life of me understand why it's been so under-the-radar. Catch it while you can!

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