Sunday, March 05, 2006
Film Review: Stay
Dir. Marc Forster
Reviewed by Matt Adcock
Between the worlds of the living and the dead there is a place you're not supposed to stay… It’s also a place you might feel like you’re in if you venture out to see this strange but stylish tale of life / death, art / suicide and love / trust. This is an intentionally weird and sometimes wonderful film that is likely to reach into your head and tie your frontal lobes together with its freaky twists and turns.
Director Marc ‘Finding Neverland’ Forster has waded deep out into David Lynch territory here and even though he has an excellent cast including Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts, somehow the weirdness on offer doesn’t really work as well as it should. This doesn’t bode incredibly well for Forster’s next film either which is entitled ‘Stranger Than Fiction’ and is about a bloke who starts hearing voices narrating his life from inside his head!?
Anyway – Stay is about a depressed art student named Henry (played by upcoming star Ryan Gosling), one day he tells psychiatrist Sam (McGregor) that he's going to do himself in – in three days. From this point things get increasingly screwy, imagine a dark live action version of Wacky Wednesday but with dead people and time jumps rather than shoes on the wall and you’ll have some idea of what to expect. Naomi Watts is lovely as usual, McGregor is convincingly menaced by the reality dissolving all around him and there are some strikingly clever camera morphs between scenes but I wasn’t convinced that it was enough.But, is anything what it seems? Will Henry top himself in three days? Can Sam figure out the clues faster than the unsuspecting audience? Do you really care? It may be that I saw this too late at night to really ‘get’ what was going on but judging by the blank look on my friend Kevin’s face throughout, I’m not so sure that it was just me being dim… If films like Donnie Darko, Mulholland Drive or Identity float your boat, you don’t mind random blind chess players (Bob Hoskins in this case) suddenly turning into other people and can handle films which are firmly from the ‘style over content’ shelf, then maybe Stay is worth a look. But if you do see it, perhaps you’d be kind enough to let me know what the deal was with McGregor's trousers which are far too short for him in every single scene? Cheers.
Darkmatt Rating: ööö (stylish and weird... bit like me)
"Clue in here somewhere... but surely it's not that obvious painting!?"
"What do you mean... the clues are on the wall behind me?"
Darkmatters: H O ME
Posted by Matt Adcock at 8:27 pm