Cherry ★★★★

the Russo Brothers follow-up to what would become the highest grossing film at the box office is nothing other than astounding. we knew from their Avengers duology that Joe and Anthony Russo were not afraid of long run times filled with constant movement and CHERRY is no different. based on the book of the same name by Nico Walker, the film follows Tom Holland as the title character Cherry, as he loses what he believed would be a normal life after enlisting in the military post 9/11, getting PTSD, becoming addicted to opioids, and needing to rob banks to pay for that addiction. Holland is fucking phenomenal in this. his strongest role thus far and I still believe he has yet to give a bad performance. The Russos, free of the need to make a movie as widely marketable as those in the MCU go for a much more stylistic approach and it works most of the time. with lots of narration, fourth wall breaks, changes in aspect ratio (seemingly for no reason) and fantasy scenes, the film often feels like a big departure from their past four films, something I very much appreciated. The stylistic choices are very inconsistent however, there are 20-30 minute stretches where the film is just a straight drama. Which is not a problem itself, until it goes back to the stylish choices from earlier in the film, and the difference between the two styles is different enough to give you whiplash. The film is unafraid to shy away from the very dirty and ugly sides of addiction, as well as the culture of America post 9/11 and how many people wanted to join the military to “fight back.” Overall a very flawed and often messy film, sometimes one that feels unnecessarily cut down from a longer version, but one that impressed me thoroughly. cannot wait to see this again.

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