A Michael Jackson impersonator (Diego Luna) befriends a Marilyn Monroe impersonator (Samantha Morton) who takes him to live on a commune in Scotland populated by other celebrity impersonators: the Pope, Charlie Chaplin, James Dean, etc. We're treated to images of Abe Lincoln tending sheep and Buckwheat cuddling with chickens. Meanwhile, in an unrelated parallel story, legendary film director/tyrant Werner Herzog plays a missionary in Central America who coaches a team of skydiving nuns.
Mister Lonely is the latest from oddball Harmony Korine (Gummo), and yeah, it's a total mess. That strangeness would be fine if the film wasn't so boring—throughout, it's slow, plodding, sentimental, and awkwardly performed (one guesses it's mostly improvised). The twin narratives never intersect, and any common theme—if there is one—is of collective insanity. It's disappointing, too, once you realize midway through that Michael Jackson has nothing to do with anything: Luna's character could be impersonating any other celebrity, and the story would remain exactly the same. There are some striking, if largely meaningless, images, and the photography is frequently gorgeous—but overall, it feels like Korine is just throwing a bunch of shit to the wall to see what will stick. Not much does.