I was unfamiliar with the phrase “my 9/11 movie” until my screenwriting teacher used it in reference to “Amelie,” and I learned the definition was “the movie that brought you out of your 9/11 funk.” We were all that way, weren’t we? Dazed and frightened and confused and angry and depressed, convinced we’d just stepped off the cliff and were plummeting toward a pile of rocks and shit at the bottom, just waiting for the landing. And then, at some point, we were rescued by art. Maybe your 9/11 movie was a painting or a symphony or a two-and-a-half-minute single, but for me it was a movie: “Citizen Ruth.” This ferocious satire of the culture wars slapped me across the face and gave me hope. If we can make movies like this, I thought, we’re better than they are, because they can’t.
Turns out A.O. Scott loves it too, and tells us why in this fine video appreciation.