Wednesday, March 10, 2010
The only people who've reviewed this movie without bringing up The Day The Clown Cried are presumably people who've never heard of The Day The Clown Cried. The story - crazed holocaust survivor finds redemption by restoring the well-being of others - screams "Oscar bait," and Jeff Goldblum's camera-owning performance certainly could have been a Crazy Heart "comeback," especially considering his sudden descent to obscurity following The Lost World (which I'd assume was intentional if he wasn't currently on a Law & Order spin-off). Thankfully (at least for me and you), director Paul Schrader doesn't do uplift. Lots of mercifully unexplained magical realism and schmaltz-cutting perversity that never feels like weirdness for weirdness' sake; when Schrader's inscrutable, he's truly inscrutable. And at this point I've accepted he'll never outgrow closing narration.