Short Film: Chris Hansen’s Clean Freak
Filmmaker Chris Hansen has finally put his entire personal confession documentary Clean Freak online. That’s it embedded above and it runs about a half-hour. In the film, Hansen lays bare his neurotic obsession with cleanliness and order, which isn’t always appreciated by his loved ones. It’s an amusing, funny short film, but succeeds more with its naked honesty — an honesty that’s still very apparent when the documentary starts to veer into fictional territory.
Clean Freak is Hansen’s follow-up film to his first feature, The Proper Care & Feeding of an American Messiah, a tremendously funny mockumentary that’s available on DVD. I’ve reviewed both films on the Underground Film Journal, but here’s an excerpt from my review of Clean Freak, where I discuss Hansen’s approach to humor:
Hansen has proved to be a master of the subtle gag. The jokes come in organically through the set-up of his premise and his scenes, which aren’t really “jokes” so much as humorous moments and they range from producing the polite laugh to the raging guffaw. While many of his set-ups are completely outlandish, and here scenes with a hypnotherapist and a Clean Freaks Anonymous meeting are the real highlights, it’s all played very straight so that the humor is completely organic and not forced.
As you can see, I recommend you check the film out.
Hansen has also recently completed his second feature film, Endings, which should be tearing up the festival circuit in 2010. I haven’t seen it yet, but I’m incredibly anxious to. The film tells the tale of a young girl who learns that today is her last day on Earth. She hooks up with two strangers who are planning to make it their last day, too. Looks good.
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Clean Freak is hilarious. Everyone knows a clean freak. My ex brother-in-law was one; in fact, that’s why he’s my ex brother-in-law. Chris Hansen is a gifted filmmaker (and truly neurotic). He’s like a gentile Woody Allen.