The Business of Fancydancing (2002) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Business of Fancydancing (2002)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Shot on digital video and taking its title from his 1992 book of poetry, Sherman Alexie's The Business of Fancydancing is a portrait of the conflicted relationship between two Native American men. Aristotle Joseph (Gene Tagaban) and Seymour Polatkin (Evan Adams) had long been best friends by the time they left their Spokane reservation to attend college in Seattle. But while Seymour flourished in Seattle as a gay writer, Aristotle endured nothing but bad luck that led to growing resentment, both against white society and his best friend. Although Aristotle returned to the reservation, Seymour remained in Seattle. Now, 15 years later, the sudden death of their mutual childhood friend brings Seymour back to the reservation -- without his white boyfriend -- where he must cope with his status as the de facto mouthpiece for his people and his estranged relationship with both Aristotle, who seems to be growing more violent by the day, and also Agnes (Michelle St. John), his one-time college girlfriend. The Business of Fancydancing was screened at the 2002 Philadelphia Gay and Lesbian International Film Festival.
Drama , Gay & Lesbian
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:


Evan Adams
as Seymour Polatkin
Michelle St. John
as Agnes Roth
Gene Tagaban
as Aristotle Joseph
Swil Kanim
as Mouse
Rebecca Carroll
as The Interviewer
Cynthia Geary
as Teresa
Leo Rossi
as Mr. Williams
Kevin Phillip
as Steven
Arthur Tulee
as Junior One
Jim Boyd
as Junior Two
Jennifer Kreisberg
as Salmon Girl
Ron Otis
as White Motorist
William Joseph Elk III
as Tarvern Father
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The Business of Fancydancing

All Critics (30) | Top Critics (10)

Feels a bit like a racy after-school special.

Full Review… | November 27, 2002
Boston Globe
Top Critic

Where it goes wrong is in the combination of poetic sensibilities and run-of-the-mill narrative cinema.

October 25, 2002
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

It bristles with a passion and intelligence too intense to allow the film's style to seem pretentious.

Full Review… | October 24, 2002
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Alexie's relatively novel take on the quintessentially American story of being stranded between cultures is compelling.

Full Review… | October 24, 2002
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

Pretentious when it should be penetrating, spasmodic when it means to be lyrical.

October 18, 2002
New York Post
Top Critic

An often affecting, low-budget melodrama that is occasionally sabotaged by its economy of means.

October 17, 2002
New York Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Business of Fancydancing

While The Business of Fancydancing is a thoughtful and complex work of sound and vision, it doesn't seem quite right to call it a film.

Lee Mayo
Lee Mayo

Touching and thought provoking. Evan Adam shines in this film. To me this film is about the saying You can't go home again well sometimes you can but it is never the way you left it in the first place.

Stephanie Knapp
Stephanie Knapp

6.5/10. A simple film with charm and style and shows that a low budget film doesn't have to be bad. Exceptionally well developed characters, good photography and fine writing. The acting is respectable. A good film.

James Higgins
James Higgins

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