Starring: Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz, John C. Reilly
Directed by: Roman Polanski
Written By: Yasmina Reza, Roman Polanski
Rating: R (US) Running Time: 1 hr 20 min
Jodie Foster and John C Reilly versus Kate Winslet and Christoph Waltz. Sounds exciting, but ends up being claustrophobic, tense and not fun. The first two feelings are meant to be induced, but the laughs aren’t forthcoming. It’s a play adaptation and unfortunately the translation from French and their sensibilities to New Yorkers doesn’t ring true and the situation is really laboured and goes on ten times longer then it ever seems possible.
Not only do you feel like a kid watching adults argue, you feel like you’re watching a play and feel like it’s being dragged out just to make it feature-length. There are some slightly amusing moments and it’s a pleasure to see these fine actors work together but the film is flat, nagging and is just there to delight in watching people slowly loose their patience with each other. They all end up shrill, angry and complaining that their adult lives are not what they want them to be. We are supposed to see the fun of social façades crumbling and the parents attitudes reflecting on their own children. Politeness, indeed, goes out the window but what it tries to say about modern living is vague, depressing and only really highlights the fact that all these people are lacking, miserable and flawed individuals.
It’s an ugly situation dragged out to the point where you can’t wait to get out of the room. No one seemingly learns anything and nothing changes. As short as it is, you will wish you had this time back!
4 great actors in a room being comically stressed at each other, kind of sounds like it might be fun. It is not. Go and have a difference of opinion with your own neighbour and see how fun it is.
It’s all set pretty much in one room so it really doesn’t matter what you watch it on.
Best moment for me:
Kate Winslet vomiting on Jodie Fosters coffee table and her treasured Art books is pretty much the most interesting and dynamic scene. It’s fun for a second, but only because you realize you’d rather be sitting through a toilet humour film than listen to these middle class couples whine at each other. Avoid