Thursday, 9 September 2010


I have no idea what the original novel that the film is based on is like although the only person I know who tried to read it hated it. The main problem with Peter Jackson's film version is it can't make up its mind what it wants to be. While it is earthbound it is fine but once we get to heaven we get lost in the too cute CGI effects - we might as well be in Oz with Dorothy. Films based on novels that have unconventional narrative structures are often better off ignoring them rather than finding a cinematic equivalent (am I alone in thinking that the film version of one of my favourite novels THE FRENCH LIEUTENANT'S WOMAN totally failed in this mission as well?) and here I kept imagining what a director like Hitchcock or even Claude Chabrol could have done with the story without the heavenly interludes. Given the course the film does take the plot just cries out for some sort of closure for its characters that is dramatically satisfying for its audience and even that is missing from the strangely schizophrenic film. Performances are exemplary with Stanley Tucci, Mark Wahlberg and Susan Sarandon being especially notable. Rating **

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