The Art Is Deceitful Above All Things

While it was overshadowed on a national level by the concurrent Oprah Winfrey/James Frey literary scandal, the 2005 revelation that author J.T. LeRoy was a wholly fictitious creation of a writer named Laura Albert hit San Francisco like a ton of unabridged OEDs. Albert-as-LeRoy's true-sounding stories of being a transgendered HIV-positive abuse survivor and former druggie and child truck-stop prostitute hit the sweet spot of what we looked for in our literary heroes in the mid-aughts. So when those stories were revealed to be all made up by a far more mundane person, at least one local writer of note said she was "grossed out" by the deception. Lost in the brouhaha was Asia Argento's adaptation of the LeRoy book The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things, which had the bad luck to hit American theaters just as it was being discovered that the stories were actually fictitious. (In fairness, the books had always been marketed as fiction rather than memoir or autobiography, but that detail was sometimes lost in the excitement around LeRoy's life.) Enough time has passed to judge the picture on its own merits — a good yarn is a good yarn, whoever spins it — and Albert will be present at tonight's midnight showing to answer questions about the making of the movie. Director Argento will participate over Skype, and LeRoy will presumably be there in spirit.

The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things plays at midnight at the Clay Theatre, 2261 Fillmore, S.F. Admission is $10; call 561-9921 or visit Sherilyn Connelly

Sat., June 29, 2013
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