I went to see Foxcatcher earlier without knowing anything about it beforehand, other than it had Steve Carrell in a “serious role” and it was something to do with wrestling (the olympic kind, not like the WWF).
<Here’s an image of an open field for a couple of seconds>
I can’t say I was bored. I spent around two hours watching, thinking “if this ends well it could be an excellent film”, but really I hadn’t a clue what it was about even as I was watching -which kind of kept it interesting throughout.
<Here’s a closeup of the back of someone’s head. Study it for 10 seconds>
Steve Carrell is almost unrecognisable, under a prosthetic nose. The only way you would know it was him in fact is by the voice and also he looks almost exactly like the “Gru” character he plays in Despicable Me.
<now see this long-shot of some men quietly running and training in a gymnasium>
If you knew what this film was about beforehand you might well be driven mad because boy does it take a long time to get to the point.
<here’s a shot of passing cars in a rural-setting>
Most characters barely talk and there’s little clue as to what they are thinking.
<insert horses here>
There’s the odd piano-tinkle to emphasise the dramatic moments, but mostly it’s silent -or would have been if it wasn’t for the howling wind outside The Gate cinema, Midleton, Cork. In fact I wasn’t sure for 2 hours if the wind was a sound effect or an added bonus -better than 3D!
So what did I really think? …There’s a complicated set of relationships at play here. The film does a good job of “showing not telling”, which is always a sign of class in my opinion. The problem is, by the end <more shots of barely-anything-onscreen go here> I didn’t really feel like I had witnessed anything worthwhile -or at least anything that I felt warranted a whole film.
I saw Birdman last week. In that, people didn’t shut up talking and talking and shouting and talking and expressing aloud their inner souls. In Foxcatcher nobody says nuffin and then something almost inexpicable happens and then it’s over. Add some mundane shots and overlong scenes where everyone forgot the camera was still rolling and you have an almost-certain Oscar contender!
…Watching it like as if it’s a “Whodunnit”, but instead a “WhatsHappenin?” I found it did hold my interest throughout <here are some olympic athletes jogging through a woodland. Silently. In sunshine>, but overall it’s not a film I could recommend to anyone and I can’t see myself watching it again.
A little bit too “worthy” for my liking, although it’s certainly very competently made.
SPOILER ZONE BELOW
(highlight the text between the dots if you’d like to read further -it’s not really a spoiler as such, but some more info is given here on the Foxcatcher plot itself).
I guess the point of the film is it says something about loneliness and massive wealth -and how massive wealth and power can be its own corruption.
Ultimately though, if there wasn’t a murder in there somewhere there would be no movie. That in itself is not a good enough reason to make or see a movie in my opinion.