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So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Movie Review - Third Person

Third Person (2014)
Starring Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis, Adrien Brody, Olivia Wilde, James Franco, Moran Atias, Maria Bello, and Kim Basinger
Directed by Paul Haggis

I've always said I'm a fan of movies that attempt to interweave multiple storylines with an overarching theme.  Third Person is one such film, but it fails so miserably as it attempts to fill its bloated 135-minute runtime with three tales of loss that feel so poorly thematically connected that I couldn't help but wonder why Oscar-winning screenwriter-director Paul Haggis was ever given the green light in the first place.

One piece of the triad deals with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Michael (Liam Neeson) who has secluded himself in a hotel room to finish penning his next masterpiece.  When his lover Anna (Olivia Wilde) surprises him, we realize that the relationship between these two lost souls is tenuous at best.  Then there's Julia (Mila Kunis), a mom whose son has been taken away from her by her ex-husband Rick (James Franco) after a horrible accident almost left their child for dead...or was not an accident at all?  Finally, Scott (Adrien Brody) is a sneaky businessman who steals upcoming suit designs from ritzy high-fashion designers in order to make cheap knock-offs.  While in a bar in Italy, he meets Monika (Moran Atias) who is struggling to find the money to pay off a gangster who has kidnapped her child...but is this all a con?

None of those stories really sound all that interesting on their own and when put together, they amount to a whole lot of depressing nothingness.   The male actors fare a bit better in the ensemble as most of the females are written so poorly that Kunis, Wilde, and Atias really couldn't do a thing to help forward their characters' plots or dimensionality.  Man or woman, though, I found myself completely removed from the variety of plights on display rather than being pulled in and invested.  Quite frankly, Third Person is a bit of a mess.

The RyMickey Rating:  D

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