After hearing the story of Bob Lazar on The Joe Rogan Experience, it got me intrigued enough to watch the associated documentary on Netflix called Bob Lazar: Area 51 and Flying Saucers. Who is Bob Lazar? What is his story? Here is the description:
Area 51, flying saucers from another world – and the program to create a fierce technology. Bob Lazar remains the singular most famous and controversial name in the world of UFOs. The reason you know about Area 51 is because Lazar came forward and told you about it. His disclosures have turned his life upside-down and he has tried to stay out of the spotlight. For this reason, he has never let any filmmaker into the private world of his daily life – that is – until now. Corbell’s film explores Lazar’s claims through the lens of thirty years – providing rare and never before revealed footage – guaranteed to alter the landscape of the debate.
It sounds intriguing, and Lazar’s story definitely is, but the execution of this documentary falls far short of being satisfying. There is just a lot that messes with the flow of it all. Here’s just a few things:
The initial interview with George Knapp was in an echo filled indoor pool room, it boggles the mind that anyone thought this was a good idea. Then there is the unnecessary narration, done by, of all people, Mickey Rourke – unnecessary because it serves no purpose or addition to the overall narrative of the film. It’s just inserted haphazardly sometimes to transit sections. They really should have cut all that out and the accompanying psychotropic Clockwork Orange-esque clips; this would improve it considerably and also, helpfully, trim the runtime considerably.
It almost feels like it’s the second part of a two part series and that you missed watching the first one. This documentary feels like a follow up piece that assumes you know Lazar’s story. But that’s the problem, if you don’t know Lazar’s story then you’re going to feel somewhat lost throughout, and the director makes little effort to coherently fill you in.
It needs to focus more on Bob himself – that is where things are the most interesting, but the director keeps injecting himself for no real reason that adds nothing, in fact probably a quarter of the film is literally him on the phone talking to investigative reporter George Knapp.
Lazar is weirdly compelling, but the flashy edits and mumbled philosophy only serve to annoy you.
In summary, I’d like to paraphrase another review it read: It’s a potentially very interesting story that’s told in a really confusing way, interspersed with Mickey Rourke reading from fortune cookies.
My summary is – I think you’ll learn a lot more by listening to Lazar’s appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience.