Present Tense: On What Happened Was…, one of the great films about loneliness

For my next “Present Tense” column at Film Comment, I wrote about Tom Noonan’s award-winning 1994 film What Happened Was…

It was impossible to see the film for a good 10 years too (it was never released on DVD. If I wanted to see it, I had to bust out my VHS copy, not to mention my VCR.) It’s finally on streaming platforms – but the image quality is very poor. If any film deserves to be restored and re-released properly, it’s this one. Karen Sillas gives one of my favorite performances ever. Not fightin’ words. At any rate, go read my column and seek out this film if you haven’t already. I used as my organizing structure Olivia Laing’s great book on loneliness: The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone.

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