From The Stranger:
How Phillips manages to make a movie about himself starring himself not annoying is worth trying to figure out. I want to say it’s because he never once flatters himself—ill-advised facial hair, V-necked shirts that result in him getting V-shaped sunburns on his flabby bare chest, scene after scene of him basically coming across as an inarticulate loser. (For example, he gets invited to a stranger’s house for dinner, and the man of the house asks him what he does for a living and Phillips replies, “Uh, good question, I dunno. I used to take care of kids, but now I’m trying to make films and stuff so…” His voice trails off. The man asks, “Do you have anything to fall back on in case that doesn’t work out?”) But it’s not only that. The cinematography in Phillips’s films is out-and-out gorgeous (this one’s shot by Sean Porter), and the people Phillips surrounds himself with in his movies are, brilliantly, always more fascinating than he is.