David Holzman’s Diary gives the appearance of a documentary and makes you feel that way throughout the duration of the film. Jim McBride came up with a cool idea to have a very realistic film that centers around one man living in New York City. When David Holzman’s Diary came out in '67, it didn’t have a proper theatrical release. Instead, it wowed audiences at festivals and museums, cementing itself into cult status.
It’s July 1967 and David is a young filmmaker who lives by himself in a Manhattan studio apartment. He sets out to make a film about his everyday life because he just got fired and will probably get drafted into the military and sent to Vietnam sooner than later. He sits in his apartment, talks about his passions, and some of his deepest thoughts. He mentions his girlfriend and how much he admires her and then we actually meet her because she comes over to hangout with him. David takes his camera out into the neighborhood with him and films random things happening. He is ultimately trying to find something out about himself through this experiment.
This is a very unique film that gets very bleak and real at times. It’s also got some moments of humor because it’s sort of making fun of itself while still taking each scene seriously. It isn’t the most riveting content, but it’s subtle and impactful at the same time. L.M. Kit Carson plays David, so he’s on the screen or talking almost the entire time. He stays so committed to making the film seem like a documentary that I gotta give him props. Jim McBride made a one of a kind, that’s for sure.