I love "slice of life" movies, where almost nothing happens other than just a character doing his/her thing. The Big Lebowski is pretty much one of these, and it's one of my favorite movies of all time. This weekend, however, I just watched the most "slice of life-y-est" movie I've ever seen: Paterson.
Paterson stars Adam Driver who is a bus driver in Paterson, NJ. The movie is exactly a week of his life and his routine: He goes to work, writes poetry throughout the day, comes home to his wife, walks his dog, hangs out at the bar, then goes home and goes to sleep.
The movie is mainly focused on his poetry, which he keeps in a "secret book". His wife wants him to show the world his art, but he's the kind of guy that doesn't even want a smartphone.
You're almost waiting for something bad to happen to him throughout the movie, but honestly nothing really happens at all. At first, I was wondering how long I would make it watching 2 hours of a bus driver's life, but it really didn't feel long at all. I don't really know why I was entertained by it, but I was.
At points, just because of Adam Driver, I felt like I was watching his character in Girls acting in a movie about a bus driver. He's one of those actors that I'm not sure I like their acting, yet I have to watch everything he's in. When Kylo Ren takes his helmet off in The Force Awakens, and it's just Adam Driver, I heard a fart noise in my head. He just doesn't fit in any environment, and always seems so out of place where-ever he is. My favorite movie of his where his Adam Driver-ness was acceptable to me was When We Were Young, where he just plays a weirdo hipster "filmmaker".
I think I enjoyed this movie because of how he gets through his banal life by writing poetry. In a similar way, when I worked in retail or some other mundane job, I would be thinking about photo and writing ideas to get through my day. I just get him. That thing that you're into is that thin shield that keeps you from falling into absolute depression, and I felt like Paterson is kind of about that.
If you like movies about nothing, then Paterson is for you.