Joe Gibbons is recognized as a groundbreaking filmmaker in experimental autobiography. His more than thirty films include Unnatural Acts, Going to the Dogs, Hellhound, and Final Exit. He has been recognized with fellowships and awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Black Maria Film and Video Festival, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Massachusetts Council on the Arts and Humanities. He has screened his work at the Rotterdam Film Festival, the Whitney Biennial, Museum Of Modern Art, and on PBS. He is a 2001 recipient of a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship.
Confessions of a Sociopath
Confessions of a Sociopath is a 60-minute autobiographical film on digital video and Super 8 film, conceived as a real-life version of Beckett’s Krapp’s Last Tape. In this film, Joe Gibbons plays a fictionalized version of himself as he discovers a roomful of Super-8 footage from his own life, detailing events he can no longer recall. This footage shows his earlier film experiments, his descent into destructive behavior, and his “bottoming out” on drugs and alcohol. At a certain point, the films are replaced by random photos, police records, and psychiatric hospital records. In the role of the narrator, Gibbons uses psychiatric terminology to describe his past exploits, as a way of poking fun at both his own misfortune and at psychiatry’s ability to medicalize non-conformity. Through Confessions of a Sociopath, the now-reformed narrator seeks to understand his life, and make amends.