When I first saw The Cruise in 1998 I never thought I’d be a tour guide and do part-time work for the same company. And I really never thought I’d watch it at the terminal on a slow afternoon, with people who actually knew the guy. Those that did know him were a little jaundiced to the film — I think it’s fabulous. He’s not crazy — a lot of what he says makes perfect sense to me. His descriptions of a mutating relationship with the city, while perhaps a bit mawkish, are spot on. I wish I could give a tour like Speed Levitch. I don’t. I do my own thing and my own thing is good, but there’d be no feature length film in my tours. (A short, maybe, on a good day.) Levitch knows and loves the city to the point of it being his whole life, but I think the point is that if he happened to be in Michigan he’d feel the same way about that place. The final image, just a random bit of impishness as he debates to open a door to a roof that may or may not set off an alarm, is a perfect. This door, and the groovy shit he wants to show us on the other side, is synecdoche for Levitch’s entire existence. His tours delight passengers until he pisses them off; the brass think him a cute oddity until his uniform smells; the city will let him wander and flow through its streets until a construction site interrupts him. Will he open the door? What will he find?
March 7, 2006
June 12, 2011
July 11, 2007
September 7, 2006
Jordan Hoffman is a New York-based writer and film critic working for The Guardian, Vanity Fair, Thrillist, Times of Israel, NY Daily News and elsewhere.
He is the host of ENGAGE: The Official Star Trek Podcast, a member of the New York Film Critics Circle and challenges you to a game of backgammon.