Joy ★★

Don't ever think that the world owes you anything, because it doesn't. The world doesn't owe you a thing.
-Joy

I was sure going into this that I liked David Russell and Jennifer Lawrence films, but Joy actually makes me doubt myself. Was the dialogue in The Fighter this bland? Was Jennifer Lawrence this unengaging in Silver Linings Playbook? Am I going to be disappointed if I revisit these movies?

Those are my main two problems, it's a well made film with bland dialogue and an unengaging performance by Lawrence, and maybe others if I'm honest. First the dialogue, there's an incredible amount that is just so on point with no creativity behind it on any level. There's a scene where Robert De Niro, playing Joy's father, is saying something that is basically supposed to make her feel like shit, well in the film there is nothing subtle about any of it. It's almost coming to the point of him outright calling her a piece of shit and I was just thinking to myself who the hell would right this? Who the hell talks like this? It's almost like he was repeating "I'm sorry you're a loser". It just annoyed the shit out of me. There's several scenes like that where I just thought the dialogue was completely uninspired.

Now J-Law. My best example for what I mean by "unengaging" is two key scenes in the film. One is when she's finally on TV ready to sell her mop. That scene should have made me believe "Yes! I want to buy that fucking mop!" instead of "Why are people suddenly buying this?! WHY??" at no point did I believe what she was doing would make ANYONE interested in buying anything from her. The second is towards the end of the film she has an encounter with a certain gentleman wearing a cowboy hat. That SHOULD have been a huge moment in the film, maybe the biggest and it was basically all on Lawrence's shoulders and she's just bleh. It feels like they did it in one take and just didn't give a shit about it.

So yeah... a really well made "bleh" movie. I really hope I still like American Hustle when I rewatch it.

Mr. DuLac liked this review