Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

So I was interested in this movie when it came out.  I kinda like Brad Pitt & the story sounds interesting enough (& I'm actually surprised I didn't read the Fitzgerald short story somewhere along the way) & it had a director known for decent cinematography (David Fincher (Fight Club)).  It had an Oscar buzz from the critics before it hit the theaters, but everyone I knew who went to see it gave it a bad review.  So I more or less forgot about it.  Then it randomly appeared on TV, so I put it on while I worked on paperwork.
This movie breaks my general rule of movies needing to be under two hours; but strangely that's not one of the issues I have with it, in fact if it were shorter it would have effected the tone & emotional impact of the film.  It feels mainly like a blend of Forest Gump & The Notebook with a touch of Amelie thrown in.  The plot of a man born old & growing younger strangely has little to do with what the movie's about.  It's more or less a tragic love story & that's fine.  I can understand someone loving or hating or simply dismissing it in much the same way they would Gump or The Notebook, but I'd put it above those for visual appeal if nothing else.  It is worth noting that the transition bits flashing forward to reading a diary are clumsily done & destroy the suspension of belief I feel a movie should have.  I also think it's interesting that it seems every lifelong tragic love story I can think of seems to take place in the american south; what is that about?  Anyway, in the end, if you like the other films mentioned in the review, check it out, but if you think Fincher & Pitt are teaming up again & it's going to be Fight Club you will be pretty disappointed.
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