Writer-director Devin Scott’s true fiction short, Long Live Xander the Great, is the story of fathers and sons and the rose-colored glasses we view them through. Long Live Xander the Great is the story of the narrator Jordan’s (Jordan Jacobo) father, Alexander, or Xander—as his friends called him. The short opens with Jordan describing him as not a bad man, but not a good one either. His parents met in college. His mother was the daughter of a wealthy brick tycoon, and Xander married her for her money.
Xander loved the freedom that comes with money, allowing him to keep up his love of motorcycles with his brother Dave. They competed together and traveled the country with little Jordan by his side. Soon, the “brick” money would dry up, and that’s when life for Jacobo and his father did so as well. This led to Xander tragically disappearing from Jacobo’s life.
“…Xander tragically disappearing from Jacobo’s life.”
Long Live Xander the Great is less a biography of Jordan Jacobo’s father but a true fiction written by Devin Scott. Seen through the young Jordan’s eyes, Xander could do no wrong. He was the most incredible father ever. He was attentive, loving, and giving. When a child has that much admiration for a father, it’s easy to overlook any shortcomings and turn a blind eye to flaws.
The documentary is a touching and poignant essay in and of itself. Jacobo’s voice is perfect for storytelling as it incredibly captures that feeling in a child’s life when the truth hits you square in the face. Visually, director Scott stitches this story together with random home movies we found at thrift stores and swap meets. There’s so much incredible footage that it’s easy to believe the story is true (long story here)…weirdly because it all feels so authentic. Scott does insert footage he shot of classic cars and motorcycles, but overall it’s a visually cohesive piece.
I’m sure most of us didn’t have a father like Xander, thankfully. But Long Live Xander the Great will conjure up enough feelings for the young sons and daughters still living inside of us today.
"…will conjure up enough feels for the young sons and daughters still living inside of us."