Hollywood has its stars, and those who would like to be. Among the latter are those dressed as costumed heroes who stand outside the famed Mann’s Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard, ready to pose for photos with passing tourists for tips “ one dollar, one smile at a time. Some call them panhandlers; they call themselves performers. Whatever the distinction, the documentary on their lives and dreams, “Confessions of a Superhero,” is absolutely fascinating.
Directed by Matthew Ogens and presented by Morgan Spurlock (“Super Size Me”), the film focuses on four core characters. There’s Christopher Dennis, a perhaps-delusional Superman whose ties to reality may be shattered. Maxwell Allen keeps alluding to a dark past befitting of his daily disguise as Batman. Joseph McQueen has overcome homelessness to play The Hulk, and small-town sweetheart Jennifer Gerht enjoys the attention she gets as Wonder Woman because she certainly isn’t getting it from her husband.
Lesser documentaries would laugh at these people, but “Confessions” doesn’t. It treats them as the humans they are and supplements their stories with startling good photography and music. Initially depressing but ultimately uplifting, Ogens’ chronicle is unexpectedly moving and oddly touching.