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'LOL'

The men of LOL are constantly on their computers or cell phones, absorbed in technology to the exclusion of the world right in front of them. Musician/video artist Alex (Kevin Bewersdorf) obsesses over an online porn star, but seems ambivalent about the possibility of a flesh-and-blood relationship; constantly online, Tim (director Joe Swanberg) hardly even looks at girlfriend Ada (Brigid Reagan); while Chris (C. Mason Wells) uses his camera phone to help keep his long-distance relationship alive. Shot on video, LOL makes the most of limited resources: Photo montages accompanied by replayed voice mail messages feel like self-contained video-art pieces, and e-mails fill the screen like silent-movie intertitles. The characters are a bit too OCD for LOL to work as the definitive commentary on technology and human relationships that it strives to be—it's particularly hard to imagine how the attractive Ada wound up with Tim. But the movie is unusually attentive to the ironies of communications technology: Note the subtle but definite awkwardness that creeps into the conversation after a prospective girlfriend casually tells Alex that she only checks her e-mail once a week.


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