Fateful Findings (2013) was my first Neil Breen film. It is a symphony in absurdity. I think it’s unfair to describe its plot in the clear, concise Wikipedia way. Because this movie cannot be experienced with that clarity.
But first a little context.
Neil Breen is a successful architect in Las Vegas. He uses his architect’s money to fund the movies that he writes, produces, directs, edits, and stars in. He has gained a cult following as a modern day Ed Wood. His movies are known for being strange, bad, and incomprehensible. They really are almost like watching someone dream.
So, hear’s me trying my best to explain the movie to my sister.
Fateful Findings (2013) starts with Dylan (Neil Breen) and his childhood friend Leah. They’re in the woods with some magic smoke and they find a box with some souvenir rocks in it. Leah looks at Dylan and says, “it’s a magical day.” And that’s the last time they see each other.
We flash forward to when Dylan is an adult. He walks? Or was standing? He’s out in the street and a Rolls-Royce hits him seventeen times.
He’s in the hospital and a pair of feet walk up to his bed. He gets the biggest souvenir rock back? Maybe? A doctor comes up to Dylan and she happens to be Leah.
Then he’s back home with his wife Emily and they make out naked in the shower while half of his face is still bloody and bandaged.
Oh, and you know how in Double Down (2005) he was a genius computer hacker terrorist and in I Am Here…Now (2009) he was cyber Christ. Well, in this one he’s a little of both, but also a novelist, but not really.
He fakes writing to protect Emily, because he’s actually an expert hacker who is trying to expose corrupt politicians and corporate America. But then he tells her and they make love on top of his laptops.
Oh, Also. He has four to six laptops at all times. None of them are ever on, even the one he is using to hack the government with.
Once Dylan tells Emily she starts drinking heavily and takes pain killers.
They go have dinner with their friend Jim and his family. Jim and his wife hate each other and their daughter likes to get naked and swim in Dylan’s pool. A couple scenes later the wife kills Jim and makes it look like a suicide. And then she dies?
Emily then overdoses on pain medication and Dylan immediately tries to romance Leah.
Dylan is relatively unfazed by all of this. However, he does go to therapy, but then the people helping him just disappear?
He then confronts the corrupt politicians and C.E.O.’s by releasing all their wrong doings to the public. He makes a speech in front of “the news” and some of the politicians and corporate heads kill themselves on live television.
Dylan and Leah walk back into the woods they played in as children. The magic smoke shows up again and they return the souvenir rock to the box beneath a tree they liked when they were eight.
Fateful Findings (2013) is like a puzzle that keeps finding new ways to not fit together. It’s a Jackson Pollock that you an your friends can eat popcorn around. It demands, if at all possible, a group viewing. It really is a digital campfire where the disparate ghost-stories of weak characters, bad acting, cheap effects, and an unhealthy obsession with laptops converge into something wild and wonderful.