2018 | 107 minutes | Rated R
“I don’t know what the hell you’re doing with this movie,” the head of the road crew says to director Eugene Jarecki midway through The King. The expensive stunt prop for Jarecki’s meandering, celebrity-studded documentary about Elvis Presley—a 1963 Rolls-Royce that once belonged to the King—has just broken down, and as a tow truck carries the immobilized Rolls, the crew member helps Jarecki work out an effective thesis for his directionless film. Up to that point, The King is mostly an aimless series of interviews about Presley, conducted with actors, musicians, and other assorted celebrities as they perch awkwardly in the backseat of Presley’s Rolls. (“Why didn’t you get one of his Cadillacs?” someone asks, reasonably.) A few of the interview subjects, like James Carville and Ethan Hawke, have worthwhile things to say; others, like Alec Baldwin and Ashton Kutcher, don’t.
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