Film Scouts and Newsweek at Sundance 1999

"Home Page"

by Andréa C. Basora

A couple of scenes into the documentary Home Page, you find yourself wondering why someone hadn't thought of this sooner. The culture of the Web provides new worlds to explore, but director Doug Block wisely narrows his focus to those who expose their entire lives on the Internet. The central figure in this circle is Web celebrity Justin Hall, who started his (very) personal home page while a student at Swarthmore, "Justin's Links from the Underground" ( What starts as an examination of cyber-culture ends up as a personal journey for the filmmaker himself; he launches his own online diary and learns to be more open in his own relationships. Nevertheless, he maintains an objective eye on the process of public self-revelation and there are some chilling scenes as Justin's ex-girlfriend describes the consequences of being featured in detail on his site, or her husband talks about reading of his wife's affair on her Web page. The film is crudely made, but there's no denying the fascination of the subject matter. Let's just say that after interviewing the director and his subject, I found myself consulting Justin's home page to see if I'd been mentioned.

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