Burning ★★★

Gosh, it's been a little while now since I've been left feeling let down by a film I assumed would be a "sure thing" based on its reception. I'd been mentally kicking myself for not getting around to this movie a lot sooner, having put it off for a variety of reasons, figuring it'd be a good ace up my sleeve for when I wanted to watch something great. Sadly, it didn't do it for me.

Before getting into my issues, I'd like to stress that the film is gorgeous. Beautifully shot, with lots of moody long takes, and wonderful colors, particularly in the key twilight sequences. Nothing short of stunning. The score is also great, used very sparingly, but impactfully. It's a marvelously crafted feature, and the performances are strong as well, particularly Steven Yeun's charismatic display.

The characters as written though feel thin, borderline nonexistant in the case of the lead. Not the fault of the actor, but his characer lacks...well, everything. Listlessly drifting about with only a mildly alluded dream of being a writer, that really isn't dreveloped or relevant at all. His primary defining trait otherwise is that of an overwhelming lust for a girl he barely knows. It's boring, it's tedious, and if the film wasn't so damn good looking, following him as he jogs around the country side for nearly half the film would've been an real problem for me.

The story at its core is interesting enough, but I didn't feel there was enough added to it to justify a two and a half hour runtime. The Murakami short story it's based on is a mere 20 pages. While the film opts for a more definitive confrontation and conclusion, it pads the runtime largely by having our blank faced protaganist plod around trying to solve a mystery that really isn't difficult to figure out. And as far as a reading of class division goes, Parasite this isn't.

I hate to be so negative, but this was a real drag for me, and I'd really been looking forward to it. I'm don't revel in having an unpopular opinion; it's frustrating haha.

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