You Cannot Kill David Arquette [Fantasia Fest]

I don’t remember the last time I actively found a documentary be so exhilarating and electrifying as much as I did with You Cannot Kill David Arquette.

I, like many others, grew up with Scream. I’ve seen See Spot Run, and Eight Legged Freaks too many times to count as a child when it first came out. Also, I’m absolutely terrified of spiders, so I never thought of Eight Legged Freaks as a comedy until I was older and questioned myself, “why was I ever afraid of this?” And its all because of David Arquette.

There was a brief time that I used to watch a lot of wrestling, and I’m friends with a lot of people who still actively watch wrestling. And during this entire documentary, I was thinking that they should watch the film. But the truth is, I’d recommend this film to anyone. There’s a universality.

In 2000, Arquette was in a film called Ready to Rumble, and as a tie-in, he joined the World Championship Wrestling storylines. And eventually, won and earned the World Heavyweight Championship. At least that depends on who you ask. Most wrestling fans took it as a slap to the face, and to the sport. To them, it seemed as if it was all for a publicity stunt, and while, yes it was, Arquette has a true love for the sport. You Cannot Kill David Arquette has directors David Darg and Price James following David Arquette as he tries to salvage his wrestling career, but also his own.

This documentary is a brutally honest look at a very vulnerable David Arquette. At the time of the beginning of filming, he had previously had a heart attack. And during the filming, he goes on benders of drinking a bit more frequently then he should. They even talk about how he is fighting crippling anxiety. When he first started his career, he was on a Vanity Fair magazine cover with a lot of other men who went on to have big careers. Leonardo DiCaprio, Matthew MacConaughey, and Will Smith all joined him on the cover. Some say that the one-two punch of Scream, and the films I’ve mentioned earlier in the review, led the general audience to look at him at a comedic actor. And thus, changed his career trajectory forever.

At no point after seeing the initial trailer, did I ever think that this documentary would be one of the most emotional and emotionally rewarding films of the festival. As his wife Christina McLarty says, on one hand, she was happy that during this time, he was getting sober again, and he had lost weight, but he was seriously injuring his body. In order to start, he started fighting in backyard rings, and then went to Mexico and eventually even had a terrifyingly scary deathmatch with Nick Gage.

It’s an emotional watch, but its beautiful to watch him make a name for himself and earn the respect he deserves. But to also, see him have the confidence in himself.

When the film is officially released, I’m going to implore my friends to see this. And you should too.