It's hard to say who is the stranger creature in this existential tragicomedy - the unusually large and brilliantly featherd Ivory-Billed Woodpecker or Johnny Neander, the amateur poet who has made it his mission to track down the long-thought-extinct bird in the swamps of Eastern Arkansas. Unlike the countless fanatics that descended upon the area after the Ivory-Billed was alledgedly spotted, Johnny's search seems to be much more personal and perverse, despite the fact that he really has no idea how to go about it. A hilarious and often poignant portrait of a man lost in the world and his own skin, Woodpecker features the dark brilliance of Jon e. Hyrns (star of the celbrated documentary Johnny Berlin) and a soundtrack with origianl contributions from Colin Greenwood of Radiohead. Much like the bird itself, the film explores the intersection of fact and fiction, resulting in a hybridized and quixotic journey embracing hope, perception and some very very strange birds.
a beakful of yuks...'Woodpecker' soars above the bulk of low-budget Amerindie farces, if not above the director's earlier 'The Hole Story", now a minor cult fave on DVD. A rare bird himself, Karpovsky remains one to watch. --Variety
I love the way Karpovsky explores the angles on the discovery of the Ivory Billed Woodpecker (namely is this all a hoax or has the bird really made a comeback?) yet his choice to blend fiction and non-fictional elements into the film plays into that idea brilliantly...'Woodpecker' is a great, funny and surprisingly moving film that's not to be missed. --Film Threat
...it doesn't matter what you know when you start watching this movie -- after 10 minutes you're going to be questioning and second-guessing. That's part of the ass-backwards, off-kilter enjoyment of 'Woodpecker. --Cinematical