Thursday, July 15, 2004

Mystic River: A Review

I hesitated in renting this movie. After all, the cast is peopled with leftist loonies, such as Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, and Kevin Bacon. Had the actors and rave reviews been its only claims to fame, I would've left it to its fawning fans. But CLINT EASTWOOD directed this one! This simple fact overcame my misgivings, and away went my cash.

Unfortunately, I found disappointment in this flick.

The Pros:

Eastwood is, without a doubt, a very good director. He did a great job in bringing all its elements together and making an interesting movie. The story was emotionally engaging, and the acting propelled the film along beautifully.

The Cons:

The above successes notwithstanding, this is perhaps one of the most depressing movies I've ever seen, filled with bitterness and rage and sorrow. I came away feeling drained and unsatisfied, hollow in the tragedy it portrays. But this in itself was acceptable, if morose. The final nail in the coffin was the characters' unrealistic and inhuman reactions to death and murder near the movie's end. I found myself shaking my head, unable to believe the behaviors of certain people, sure that real human beings would never act in such a fashion. (At least, I hope not). Also, some of the people did things for inexplicable reasons. This may be true to life, but it's annoying on film.

In short, if you like movies that are gut-wrenching and interesting, go see it. If you like movies with a little sunshine after the rain, shun this one like the plague. And bring an umbrella.


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