Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Movie Review: Closer

Watched "Closer" on HBO this evening. Apparently it got great reviews. Those movie critics were clearly watching another, less completely crappy, movie.

1) I don't mind sex in movies, particularly when it's relevant to the plot. This movie managed to be absolutely drenched in sex (or at least talk about sex) which was completely relevant to the plot - and had me wishing that some nuns would come onscreen and beat some chastity into the characters. OK, it doesn't help that Julia Roberts looks like she was hit by an ugly stick, and that Natalie Portman appears to be 11, but still. I spent part of this film "resting my eyes" and only listening to the dialog - even without the ugly being beamed into my retinas, I wanted all these awful people to take vows and go to a monastery somewhere.

2) Every character in this film was a piece of garbage. Humans are fallible creatures - we make mistakes. But if you're going to portray everyone in the film as being an animal with the moral sensitivity of a cockroach, then do it somewhere where I don't have to watch it.

3) Every * scrap * of * dialog * was * delivered * in * the * bullets * firing * mode * of * a * dramatic * play * written * by * someone * who * wants * to * be * David * Mamet * and * real * people * don't * talk * like * that. They pause. They fumble. It's fine to cut most of that out - in fact, please do - but you have to include some glimmer of humanity in the vocalizations. If you want us be able to suspend our disbelief that any two males would be in a fight over Julia Roberts, you've got to throw us a bone of believable human interactions once in a while.

4) Stupid twist ending. Spoiler - as if anything could further spoil this rancid heap of putrefying offal - the Natalie Portman character was a huge liar about her identity, and this is pointlessly revealed in the final scenes. Like we give a damn at that point; she's already got all the warm lovability of Mengele by then, it's not like we're surprised to discover that she's a liar on top of everything else.

5) Not to overly focus on poor Natalie, but I couldn't help thinking "no wonder Anni tried to strangle her" pretty much whenever she opened her mouth.

Overall grade: F.

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