Jim Killeen, former bit-actor and current small businessman, decided to turn the typical act of searching for other people with his same name on Google into the premise for a documentary — Google Me. He tracked down a number of other Jim Killeens around the world, from Australia to Ireland, and spent some time to get to know them and ask them a few questions. The result is an hour and a half of "gee whiz" encounters and white male bonding. See Jim meet Jim! And Jim! And Jim! See Jim get grossed out by vegemite and haggis! See Jim uncomfortable as the particulars of a swingers party are explained! You can watch it all for free on YouTube. But what was the most interesting thing about the film?
It wasn't the interview with now-former CIO Douglas Merrill, which served to convince me that the Canadian-nice Merrill will get eaten alive by the music industry. It wasn't the moment when Jim Killeen of Cobe, Ireland, a Catholic priest, argues the Pope's position on human sexuality with Jim Killeen of Denver, Colorado, the swinger and self-described "tranny chaser."
It was a few minutes into the film when noted Scientologist and Earthlink founder Sky Dayton makes an incongruous appearance to muse on the business of moving bits. Later on, the filmmaker Killeen intereviews his schizophrenic brother and sister about their experiences with psychiatrists and the medications they're currently taking, proclaiming that he feels they'd be better off without psychiatric care. Finally he declares on camera that he's a Scientologist, confirming my suspicions based on Dayton's appearance and the anti-psychiatry agitprop.
But that's just a side note in a watchable and somewhat entertaining but otherwise forgettable documentary. The best moments are the man-on-the-street interviews where people from around the world describe their own experiences running a vanity search for their name on Google. But it doesn't succeed on the same, earnest level that 24 Hours on Craigslist did, probably because what it has in geographic scope it lacks in range of characters as subjects.