Many favorites, as well as a small handful of films that I don't care for... in no particular order (1960-2014).
Maps to the Stars
A Film By David Cronenberg
Led by the loathsome yet funny and touching child-star Benjie, we witness the convoluted world of shallow, selfish celebrities and their minions, all of whom are about to be manipulated and destroyed by the young woman who literally represents the fruit of their twisted machinations, Agatha, Benjie’s tormented, apparently psychotic sister.
If you ever saw David Lynch's Mulholland Dr. and wondered what it might have looked like with David Cronenberg at the helm, then this is the film for you.
This is a great film and one that only Cronenberg could have made.
This is easily Julianne Moore's best performance and the entire cast is terrific
Bruce Wagner's script is equally haunting and satirical.
Howard Shore's score is absolutely beautiful.
David Cronenberg is one of the best filmmakers around and this is one of his finest works to date.
los angeles seems like a nice place.
I loved it.
It took two viewings and a two hour discussion to get there, but I'm starting to come around on this movie. It's essentially the incestuous offspring of VIDEODROME and THE BROOD; all child abuse, crackpot therapists, and show business as a sexually transmitted disease. Some have complained that its Hollywood satire feels a little hackneyed -- and they're not wrong. Ultimately, though, that vague sense of staleness fits within MAPS TO THE STARS' suggestion that Hollywood is defined by its complete and utter lack of imagination. There are no new ideas here. The movie Benji is making is a sequel; the movie Havana wants to make is a new version of a film her mother made fifty years ago. In…
From being a millionaire, driven around in a limousine, to driving around millionaires in a limousine. What connection between his two latest features is David Cronenberg trying to communicate through Robert Pattinson, a.k.a. Sparkly Vampire? I do not have a ready answer, but perhaps it’s hidden somewhere in the mumbo-jumbo that constitutes Maps to the Stars; somewhere in-between the forgettable sluggish acting and the pessimisms stacked on pessimisms; somewhere in-between the Hollywood critiques that were fun for twenty minutes, but not for the length of an otherwise plotless movie; somewhere in-between the almost clumsy genre mix of drama, black comedy, ghost horror and psychological thriller. Come on David, you can do better.
Cronenberg literally turns the incestuous nature of Hollywood back onto itself in this film of seedy personalities, dark pasts and parodied cliche. At times it is hard to distinguish how the director has positioned the film, as either a pure biting piece of satire or a literal send-up of a poorly written drama. Mostly it feels outdated and adds very little commentary to the subject of stardom.
The set-up is placed between two connecting stories at the opposite end of career progression. Juliane Moore's Havana is an ageing actress struggling to get a recognisable job, sleeping around for favours and stomping her feet like a stroppy teenager when things don't go her way. On the other side 13-year-old Benjie (played…
As a longtime fan of director David Cronenberg, I can only say that this film is close to being an unmitigated disaster. It plays like some unholy mashup of Altman, Lynch, and Polanski, but without their humor, surrealism, or style. As a sledgehammer "critique" of Hollywood and celebrity, it's painfully superficial and obvious -- when it's not being ridiculously overblown.
The only thing that makes this flick endurable is the ferocious performance of Julianne Moore. She proves, once again, that she is an actress who seemingly knows no bounds. If that means, however, that we have to see her constipatedly farting on the toilet & wiping her ass is a question that I suppose is best left unanswered....
Give me Sunset Boulevard, The Player, or Mulholland Drive any day.
Re watched because my fiancee fell asleep in the theater and wanted to finish it. Cosmopolis greatly improved for me on a second viewing, but while I appreciated MTTS a little more this time I can't get over the cheap looking effects, poor sound design and cringe inducing dialogue.
I will say Julianne Moore's scene on the toilet is the best of it's kind.
Isn't it funny how seemingly all filmmakers move to making movies about movies when they reach a certain age?
Maps to the Stars is phenomenal and really exceeded my expectations from Cronenberg, especially coming alongside such a dud in Cosmopolis. Wickedly funny, gloriously satirical and wry: a real comic nightmare on the psychosis of the Hollywood institution.
Definitely one of the weirdest movies I've seen in a long time. I don't feel like I can give it the rating it deserves until I rewatch it.
At a certain point, about 3/4ths of the way through the film, everything suddenly made sense. The film transformed from a shrill, shallow Biz satire into Cronenberg's take on a Greek tragedy, a series of familial cycles whose patterns draw all involved inevitably into ruin. Then, about ten seconds after this epiphany, I realized that this didn't excuse the shoddy script, flat digital camerawork and supremely muddled performances. At least he was, in fact, "going for something", even if all that's there are comically bad digital fire effects and someone having their period on a white couch.
Cronenberg's most recent movies are just terrible.
David Cronenberg takes a look at Hollywood and doesn't seem to like it very much. In this offbeat (well it IS Cronenberg) drama the focus is a family headed by John Cusak's 'self help' guru and his wife (Olivia Williams). Their son Benjie (Evan Bird) is a thirteen year old child star who has already gone through his first bout of rehab. Their estranged daughter (Mia Wasikowska) arrives in tinsel town and goes to work as the personal assistant to a fading star (Julianne Moore) with her own mummy issues.
The simmering underlying tensions and secrets combined with startling (dream?) sequences are reminiscent of David Lynch and Cronenberg maintains a darkly humorous tone until the violent denouement.
What it all…
1) Hollywood is fucked up. I think we can probably all agree with that.
2) Having a mental illness will probably fuck you up, but not in the ways shown here, even in Hollywood.
3) If this is satire it's comedy far blacker than the blackest black hole, but like a black hole nothing can escape from it, meaning that any "comedy" in it will never be seen.
I think I got it. Hollywood is ... bad, right?
At a certain point I couldn't tell what was really happening and what was imagined, which I think was the point? Then at the end I realized, "oh I think everything actually happened," which was worse.
A big collection of films that might be considered as strange, mindfucking, surreal and weird. Sorted by year. Suggestions are…
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014, now updated every mid-April.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the…