Here’s the thing. If I had stopped it in the first 30 minutes, I would not have gone back to press play. But 1) it’s nominated for an Oscar and 2) I was in a movie theatre and there is yet to be a play/pause/stop option there. So I continued to see this film in fear that I would walk out and be disappointed in what seemed to be a promising movie (both from its accolades and it’s star-power cast).
As I continued to watch I got deeper into the plot and somewhere in between, probably as the film stopped doing as many jump cuts to time sensitive photographs, I started to enjoy the ride.
This is not a traditional film. It tries to tell a story in a very self-aware way. It isn’t told like the average movie, and for this attempt you have to applaud it. Was it done to perfection? Well my opinion is that it was not. Some jokes (I think) fell flat. And the jump cuts for me were annoying.
But hey. I’m no expert. And just because it’s not my cup of tea doesn’t mean it won’t be yours. I tend to like weird things like that but for some reason I just wasn’t into it today.
Now this is based on a true story. So I can’t say anything about the lack of diversity because I assume that that means that the real-life counterparts are also all white males. And maybe it’s because I’ve recently become more aware of this issue, or maybe this filmed for whatever reason stood out to me. But the lack of people of colour or women in this film stood out. Now I’d like to think that this is a reflection of the real life counter-parts (as I mentioned above) but honestly it made me very aware of the fact that I appreciate films give women more than 5 minutes of screen time, especially in a film with a large ensemble.
Maybe this stood out to me because of the Margot Robbie scene in the film that rubbed me the wrong way. The bit is introduced as an easier way to explain a term that the audience may not be familiar with. This I applaud, because I think the film did it very well in other similar bits. What rubbed me the wrong way was the fact that they thought they needed Margot Robbie to be in a bathtub to do it. I didn’t find it funny, and I found it rather offensive. I can’t learn something from someone fully dressed? I can’t understand something without a naked woman in a bathtub sipping champagne? I’d like to think I can actually, and sure I’m not sexually attracted to women, but if that’s the reason why I didn’t like that scene then the movie is isolating every human being who isn’t attracted to women.
I should note that this is solely my opinion, because the people I saw this movie with didn’t agree. They shrugged saying they didn’t mind it. Which may have even made me madder, so maybe this is just residual anger of me not liking to see female objectification.
Was it a good film? Yes I’d say that. If I were an Oscar voter (which I’m not) would I vote for it to be best picture? No, I wouldn’t. Would I recommend the film? Yes. Yes because the problems the film brings up are still relevant to us, and anyone with a brain knows that what happened in 2008, or rather what didn’t happen after that is a travesty in human history.
So I’d watch it. But don’t expect to love it just because you (like me) love the actors.