Friday, November 28, 2014

Jason watches BIRDMAN: OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE)

Michael Keaton is an aging actor who decades ago played a famous superhero in a blockbuster movie that ushered in a new era of big-budget blockbuster superhero movies that have just gotten bigger and more expensive since.

Excuse me, I meant Michael Keaton plays an aging actor...

And that's just the start of how the movie plays with the boundaries between reality and fantasy. Keaton plays Riggan, who is trying to make the move from Hollywood to Broadway by directing and starring in "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love." His Birdman character talks to him and he can move things with his mind. Or at least he's convinced he can. Edward Norton co-stars as Mike, a darling of the critics who can only "be real" (or, for that matter, tumescent) on stage. Zach Galifianakis stars as Riggan's best friend/producer and Emma Stone as his semi-estranged daughter. As the production is barely holding together, and previews are one disaster after another (including a streak around the block in his tighty-whities) reality and fantasy blur. Not just in Riggan's mind, but in the movie. The percussion soundtrack beating in his head will occasionally becomes a drummer jamming in the background. And the closing scene. Well, no spoilers but I'm still thinking about that scene. And what the jellyfish mean, for that matter. This movie might end up being navel-gazing pop psychology that thinks it's more clever than it really is, but for now it's a movie that deserves to be thought about, and maybe rewatched.

Running Time: 119 minutes
My Total Minutes: 374,262

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