Friday Movie Review - Birdman
So there is a new film out starring some fella who played Batman a few years back, the funny lad from the Hangover and is directed by a guy whose crowning achievement was an Oscar in 2006 for a musical score, and it's all about the production of a play. Sound appealing? Well it has been nominated for seven Golden Globes, has a score of 92/100 on Rotten Tomatoes, and is being touted for several Oscar nominations, maybe even a win or two. Must be doing something right.
Michael Keaton stars as Riggan Thomson, an ageing actor trying to prove something to those around him, as well as himself. He puts on a Broadway show (an adaptation of a book by Raymond Carver) with his friend (Zach Galifianakis). He's got a post-rehab daughter (Emma Stone), a divorced wife (Amy Ryan), a cranky girlfriend (Andrea Riseborough) and a crazy co-star (Edward Norton) to deal with, as well as his own mind playing tricks on him.
This film is Tarantino bonkers, minus the bloodbath. Alejandro González Iñárritu must have some crazy things going on in this mind, most of the best directors do. I found it so hard to label. It's funny, dark, twisted, compelling, quirky, and much more. The cinematography is brilliant, making the film look like just one long take. The soundtrack, provided by Antonio Sanchez, is fantastic. Michael Keaton is excellent, Edward Norton is so annoying you just want to punch his character in the face, and Zach Galifianakis shows he's more than just a… Not-overly-pretty face?
It's a weird and wonderful film that's not hard to watch, but has so many underlying themes: redemption; love; and despair. It's refreshingly different, and that's what makes it so interesting. It might win some awards, it might not. Who cares? It's still a bloody great film.