Thursday, January 15, 2009

"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button"

Title: “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Running time: 166 minutes
Rated: PG-13
Cast: Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Jarred Harris, Tilda Swinton, Taraji P. Henson
Director: David Fincher

I have a confession to make and I think that it shows so far, when it had come to movies. I am a total and utter sucker for dramas, heavy serious movies that have one goal only to make you feel like at a funeral, sophisticated studies on life or tear jerking love sagas that kind of go Shakespeare on the viewer. And Christmas has been quite generous with such productions, mainly for the Oscar awards and Golden Globes, as Theresa pointed out, but it’s like heaven for me, so I can’t complain, just wished that the reasons behind such films were nobler and seeking enlightenment.

“The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” is based on a short story written by Francis Scott Fitzgerald, who sadly I seem to mistake for a woman due to that traitorous first name. That aside the story behind the movie revolves around Benjamin Button, who has been unfortunate enough be born as a 86 year-old baby. As the years go by he grows backwards, an idea that can easily cross the genre lines and be a subject of contemporary paranormal stories. During his life he faces the same problems as any human being such as finding love, sorting out his heritage, participating in World War ІІ and building a family, until he dies in his infancy.

The general concept won me over instantly. I prefer everything to be out-of-the-box and as twisted and incomprehensible as it can be. When it comes to art I want the “Now I have seen everything” effect and even if the cast and special effects for 200 million weren’t present I think I would have liked the movie. As far as the movie itself, I think I have never been affected by a motion picture before, the way “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” did, subconsciously and with the after taste that there is more to the story.

Ever viewer, from their own standpoint in life, can find something unique and universally valid about life that they can cherish as a secret between them and the movie. I got three universal truths from how I view the world. One way or the other you can’t escape death, because it’s the one constant thing in our lives. Whether you count up or down you will reach a moment, where no more time will be available to you. Getting younger and wiser at the same time won’t make anything easier. Take a note, shameless plastic youth fanatics. There is a time for everything. And lastly life knows how to complicate things no matter what life situation or strategy you choose, there always will be problems you will have to deal with and that if you are determined enough you can overcome them.

But yeah, the analytical yadda yadda aside, the sheer entertainment value “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” has is spectacular. Brad Pitt has never been one of my favorite actors despite making block buster after block buster, but the cinematographic and make-up induced journey through time from an almost unrecognizable elderly grandpa to the fit young man from the “Thelma and Louise” days. I think they did a good pick, since his voice has a very soothing air around it suitable for being a narrator and portray calm innocence slash wisdom. But Brad Pitt is not the only one to praise. As far as partnering goes Cate Blanchett did a formidable job as Daisy Fuller and is yet to disprove my opinion that she is one heck of a chameleon. Even Tilda Swinton made an impression on me for her half an hour presence in the movie.

Since “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” unravels as two parallel story arc, I am obliged to mention the one developing in the current time line. We have a dying Daisy Fuller introducing her daughter Carolina (Julia Ormond) to her true father Pitt via his own journal. I know that this technique can be somewhat irritating, but given the situation I think it’s the best solution to have a daughter learn and understand the truth behind her real father.

As conclusion this couch potato has been satisfied and urges fellow couch potatoes to watch and judge for themselves.


Smirking Revenge said...

I absolutely loved it. David Fincher, my favorite actress Cate, and a wonderful little tale about life and I was hooked. Though I will admit one of my favorite parts of the film was the 'Did I ever tell you I have been hit by lightning 7 times. Once, I was...' cracked me up.

daydream said...

I actually believed that by the end of the movie, he would have told all seven times, but we got just three times. It was a great touch.

Related Posts with Thumbnails