Van Sant’s fictionalized film based on the Columbine shootings is artful, thoughtful and non-exploitive. Critics have said that it gives us no insights into why Columbine happened, and I agree. ‘Bowling for Columbine’ has more ideas as to the “why”. Van Sant has said that it wasn’t his intention to provide answers. My understanding is that the teen actors are non-professionals, an approach that results in uncommonly natural performances.
--Nov 17, 2003