Tag Archives: death in family

THE GOLDFINCH examines grief and loss through the thread of a bird caught in canvas.

THE GOLDFINCH. Country: USA. Director: John Crowley. Screenwriter: Peter Straughan. Based on the Pulitzer Prize novel by Donna Tartt. Cast: Oakes Fegley, Ansel Elgort, Nicole Kidman, Jeffrey Wright, Luke Wilson, Sarah Paulson, Finn Wolfhard, Aneurin Barnard, Willa Fitzgerald, Ashleigh Cummings, Dennis O’Hare. Language: English, Ukrainian, Danish, French. Released: September 13, 2019. Runtime, 150 minutes.

Mostly Indies rating: C+

Right on the heels of having watched source link dar essay contest leadership essays for college click here purchase term papers online reed college thesis tower xfem thesis enter site source viagra 50mg canada sir gawain and the green knight symbolism essay http://pejepscothistorical.org/education/write-my-logic-blog-post/03/ thesis essay dissertation how to write a creative writing essay go site https://lajudicialcollege.org/forall/medical-resume-help/16/ globalization book report guidelines how to essay writing services work https://ramapoforchildren.org/youth/esl-article-writers-site-au/47/ pay to get top phd essay on shakespeare thesis statement good and bad examples http://jeromechamber.com/event/some-essay-topics/23/ https://dvas.org/buy-valtrex-onine-no-prescription-12927/ cheap rhetorical analysis essay writers website us follow url hire a ghostwriter narrative essay example viagra and grapefruit steps in writing a project report thesis writing meme http://www.chesszone.org/lib/buy-paper-guns-2339.html It, Chapter Two, comes the adaptation of yet another massive novel, Donna Tartt’s polarizing novel The Goldfinch, a piece of work that has been labeled as both the best and the worst thing that has happened to the English language as of late. So its not a shock that a book that would engender such sentiment in the literary world would also stir some equally difficult feelings once its conversion to cinema was made a reality. Of course, that is exactly what happened, with the first reviews arriving right on cue with not much good to say about the movie, noting its richness of visuals, but lack of a central heart, its length, its shallow depiction of grief, uneven acting on behalf of some of its cast, and the choppy time jumps in which we begin at the end and go back only to do so over and over again. I for one did not see anything wrong with the time-jumps; somehow, I felt at ease with the technique. What probably helped me ease into the “Dickensian” story (yes, that too has littered one too many reviews of this movie; I won’t give it that comparison, sorry) was that I knew next to nothing about it. I haven’t read the book and since have begun it. Like 2018s The Wife, I leapt to cinemas solely on the basis of a) the trailer and b) Glenn Close and boy, was I stunned to see not only a performance with a capital P, but a lean story that opened itself up, revealing layers and layers of hurt, betrayals, sacrifice, and selfless love that would have been better off in a more deserving man. [The book, while good, is actually less compelling.] Anyway, so I went to see The Goldfinch and I have to say, it is a handsome, well-told story of a boy facing unimaginable loss and having to come through using only his wits and the one element glueing himself to the ground: the 1654 Fabritius painting of a goldfinch, captive in time and space on canvas. To see his eventual growth and incursion into the underbelly of society while haunted for the entirety of it, almost like an outsider looking into a car crash in slow motion, is sad enough as it is, and both actors — Oakes Fegley and the baby-faced Ansel Elgort carry the story more or less successfully. However, let me say, despite that I enjoyed The Goldfinch, I never felt that the story itself was, however, too compelling: perhaps there was a true lack of mystery to it nd not much angst, or emotional highs and lows, and holding the audience rapt for two and a half hours only to reveal its cards at the very end, while it is fitting, comes off as a bit underwhelming when much of the events are somewhat muted and not too interesting. If at all, seeing solid actors try their best (although Sarah Paulson does a massive faux pas in a scene when she gets so emotional over a tragic loss that it takes her into another movie entirely, considering how bitchy her character has been, but I’m still okay with that) is all that one can ask of a movie adaptation of a book. It could have been worse, and no, this is not even close to the triumphant disaster that was The Bonfire of the Vanities — that was just gross negligence to bring any coherence to a satire. The Goldfinch is a well told yarn that should he a self-contained miniseries. It is, not, by any means, Dickensian. Let’s just say, it’s Dickens-lite for the novice. There are many of these novels around with stock characters you’ve seen in many other movies and plot developments that you can predict in your sleep. Does it deliver? Yes, Is it solid? Yes? Now, will you remember this tomorrow?

No.

FIVE NIGHTS IN MAINE

3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

A different kind of story from the previously reviewed, basic slasher thriller The Assistant is Marie Curran’s Five Nights in Maine. A similar tragedy brings two people who couldn’t be more different together: David Oyelowo as Sherwin, and Dianne Wiest as Lucinda. Both of them have an unimaginable shared loss, that of his wife and her daughter Fiona, who was like the son in The Assistant, killed in a car crash after a visit to Lucinda’s.

Fiona, it appears, while happily married to Sherwin, had her own reservations on having a child with him because of their racial differences, and that seems to be the main fulcrum driving the wedge that separates Lucinda from Sherwin. Trying to understand what could have happened and sucking up his pride Sherwin travels all the way from Virginia to Maine to spend a week with Lucinda. He gets a cold greeting—one that gets colder and colder as his stay extends itself. The only person to give him friendly support is Lucinda’s caretaker, Ann (Rosie Perez), but it’s really not enough to heal the pain. Lucinda continues to battle and resist Sherwin’s attempts at some form of reconciliation like a complete monster mother. Her hostility is so palpable it leaps off the screen and right onto your lap. It’s hard to know where to even begin, where to even get to her.

Five Nights in Maine is an all-too-short two-character mini-drama that doesn’t offer an easy solution to irreconcilable differences. Dianne Wiest tackles her role in the way someone like Bette Davis or Katharine Hepburn would have in their older years playing obdurate characters (which they became known for). Her Lucinda is a woman so put off by Sherwin’s offer of an olive branch that all she can do is lash out, continually, until she finally in a moment of pure anguish explodes and implodes simultaneously with the line that it should have been her to die first. She is matched scene by scene with David Oyelowo’s mourning. His Sherwin is a man seeking answers where there may not be any, and one scene of him almost getting shot at while jogging in the Maine woods is rife with the implied racism that hovers over the drama like a storm cloud.






LOUDER THAN BOMBS

4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

 

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Nothing brings a family dysfunction to the surface like the departure of the glue that holds them together, and in Joachim Trier’s and Eskil Vogt’s new film Louder than Bombs it all rings too true. However, this is not a melodramatic film — it would have been easy to give actors scene after scene of loud arguing, emoting, and a finale of almost grandiose proportions. Trier instead has created a rather tender and quiet portrait of a father and his two sons coming to terms with the premature death of their mother who was a noted photo journalist and had a couple of secrets of her own.

The mother, Isabelle (Isabelle Huppert), hovers over the picture like a ghost who won’t rest in peace. When we first see her she’s getting some award for her body of work. Soon later we realize how it was she really died — in a car crash, possibly caused by her, which would make it suicide. However, no one ever truly speaks out that word and it starts a chain of avoidance between the surviving characters who now have to contend with this shattered new reality. Gene (Gabriel Byrne), Isabelle’s widow, has no idea how to reach his teenage son Conrad (David Druid) who has become withdrawn and aggressive, so he takes to either following him after school or playing World of Warcraft in order to connect. Gene has also been carrying on with Hannah (Amy Ryan), David’s teacher, in a movie that seems more out of loneliness than anything.

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In the meantime, in for a retrospective of his mother’s work, older son Jonah (Jesse Eisenberg) shows up. He’s recently become a father and on the night that his wife borne him a son he ran into and reconnected with a former flame who’s mother was also dying in the hospital.

As I said before, this isn’t a movie with big revelations complete with an abundance of self-important dialog or all too camera-ready scene chewing. If at all the only moment that any performance feels completely naked even when it doesn’t reveal anything other than inner torment is a flashback sequence showing Huppert in a hotel, her face pinched and sad. It’s no wonder she’s this force that will not give away: Huppert has imbued her character with a world of inner pain that perhaps had no other solution than the way out. Everyone else is left to gravitate around her and try to fill in the void she has left.

Because of this, Louder than Bombs may disappoint viewers looking for that “a-ha!” moment when everyone comes into the foreground and sounds off. I actually preferred this somewhat elliptical turn, since let’s face it, this is closer how we tend to react to traumas such as these. It’s probably despite of this, where the film films incomplete, that one will appreciate its content more.