Posted to Movies at 07:03 PM on Oct 8, 2004
Slimy, yet satisfying.
This film reminded me a lot of Infinite Jest. It's pretty much endless and has a cast of thousands whose stories are seemingly unrelated at first, but turn out to interconnect at the end.
It's extremely well-written. Everything comes together very neatly, with few or no holes. It has a great cast. Julianne Moore. Philip Seymour Hoffman. William Macy. Every single character played by a really great actor. Except for Tom Cruise. More on that later. Some of the dialogue was even pretty okay.
So what's the problem?.
It's sort of boring. And for a movie so heavily hyped, boring is a sin..
There is just so much stuff that could be taken out. For instance: William H. Macy is a former child prodigy. He appeared on a quiz show on TV and was a champion for an astonishingly long period of time. As an adult, he has problems. He can't hold a job. He's confused. The show is still on, though, with a brand-new bunch of whiz kids. The movie spends, like, twenty minutes on the set of the game show, following the action. Some of this action is germane to the story, some of it isn't. And there's tons of just irrelevant throwaway storyline..
Like Tom Cruise's. Tom Cruise's character made me want to throw stuff at the TV. Not just because his character is an asshole, but because Tom himself really isn't believable. Tom is a STAH. No matter what kind of movie he's in; no matter what kind of character he's playing, people will watch him. He makes zillions of dollars, but he doesn't have an Oscar yet. This movie contains apporximately half an hour of Tom Cruise shamelessly begging for that Oscar. You think he's playing a motivational speaker? Oh no. He's shouting, "Give me an Oscar, damn you! I deserve it! Pleeeeease!" His desperation makes it seem like he's kind of phoning it it, while the rest of the cast is putting in all the effort..
My personal favorite character is Philip Seymour Hoffman's nurse. He was just so sincere that he was endearing..
I've found that people either love the "rain of frogs" thing or they hate it. I liked it. I liked the way it affected each character in tiny little ways, and I like how it just comes out of nowhere. I think it worked. It was the perfect climax..
I liked this film, and I agree with you that the nurse guy was great. I've seen him in a few other movies with some of this cast, looks like it was one of the Mission Impossible films, although I seem to remember another connection between him and someone.
This film had a great feel to it, and the frogs somehow fit and expressed it well. The relationship between Tom Cruise and his dad was executed well.
I'd give this film a thumbs up, and I'd look for other movies made by the same folks.
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