Tuesday, 20 October 2009

A Single Man

My first film of the 2009 London Film Festival. Ugh. A very, very long photo shoot for GQ. I was so incredibly bored by this film. As anyone who truly knows me knows, I should have been a gay man, so with respect to the film's ingredients this should have been a film for me: extreme color palettes, lots of retro kitch, multiple references to classic film, camera lingering extensively on gorgeous male bodies and faces. And yet I loathed it. The film was quintessentially trite as in "all style and no substance" but with the most embarrassingly strained attempt at Substance. Poor Christopher Isherwood (the script is based on his excellent novel) must be rolling in his grave. Colin Firth tried very hard to be an actor, as is his wont, but every dragged out close up of his face was simply a painful struggle for subtlety which he could not achieve. Julianne Moore couldn't do the posh British accent--mostly she just slurred and on her face all that could be read was "Am I drunk or am I British?" (Not entirely fair as the one almost decent scene in the movie was hers when she and Firth dance after dinner.) Poor Nicholas Hoult was entirely miscast. He couldn't pull off the seductive ingenue in the least and he wasn't even that great to look at. And doesn't Tom Ford know that the de rigeur sitting-on-the-toilet scene has by now become a mark of the amateur? As for technical issues, trying to create profundity with sudden whooshes of color, slow motion sequences, and fragemented shots, please, not even worthy of a student film, and especially not a gay student film.

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