Synopses & Reviews
Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, Exit Through the Gift Shop is a chaotic filmic study of low-level criminality, comradeship and incompetence. Directed by Banksy, and narrated by the film star Rhys Ifans, it follows the career of eccentric Los Angeles shopkeeper Thierry Guetta as he becomes interested in street art, and begins to shoot footage of street artists such as Shepard Fairey and Space Invader at work. He soon encounters the world-famed but notoriously fugitive English artist known as Banksy, who, incredibly, allows him to document several works and the preparations for his blockbuster exhibition, Barely Legal . When Guetta finally completes his steet art film, Banksy discovers it to be an incoherent mess, and decides to turn the camera on Guetta and make the film himself. To keep Guetta busy, he proposes that he create his own art show, which leads to untold chaos and a denouement that astonishes both Banksy and Fairey. Ann Hornaday of the Washington Post feted this wild and improbable tale as a celebration of pranksterism and perhaps a superb prank in its own right ] Exit Through the Gift Shop captures the outlaw, monkey-wrenching glee of the graffiti artists who became art stars at the turn of this century, while raising profound questions about authorship, the truth claims of nonfiction film and that old chestnut 'What Is Art?'