×

BLU-RAY/DVD REVIEWS

003797Reviews & Counting
SEARCH BY TITLE # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Irrational Man
BLU-RAY disk
03.02.2016 By: Jason Adams
Irrational Man order download
Director:
Woody Allen

Actors:
Joaquin Phoenix
Emma Stone
Parker Posey

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

star Printer-Friendly version
comment
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A jaded philosophy professor finds himself with a renewed zest for life when he falls for a student and decides to commit a crime.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?

Woody Allen is one our most frustrating working directors. For every MIDNIGHT IN PARIS or BLUE JASMINE we get a MAGIC IN THE MOONLIGHT or TO ROME WITH LOVE. It's hard to know which end of the spectrum each of his annual offerings will end up, but 2015's IRRATIONAL MAN ultimately falls somewhere in the middle.

For the first half-hour I thought for sure this was another disappointment. IRRATIONAL MAN's opening act is legitimately painful, full of directionless discussions of ethics and philosophy that don't seem to hint at an actual story. It's a pretty bad way to introduce the plot and characters, made worse by clunky dual narration and a confusing tone. A scene where Joaquin Phoenix's character plays Russian roulette should filled with suspenseful, not eliciting laughter.

However, if you suffer through it, once the film's twist kicks in and you get a sense where the story and characters are going, things pick up substantially. What IRRATIONAL MAN ends up being is another of Allen's take on Dostoevsky, an existential exploration of difficult choices and consequences. I won't spoil what exactly happens, but all the talk about morality and chance in the first act isn't for nothing. Phoenix and Emma Stone quickly settle in to their respective roles well and have natural chemistry together, though their characters follow fairly predictable arcs. Their playful rapport, along with the movie's jazzy score, keeps the movie from getting too serious with the heady subject matter and lofty ideas.

Unfortunately, even with the things that work, IRRATIONAL MAN still comes off like a minor Woody Allen film. Not to mention it feels like he's already tackled this topic better in movies as far back as 1989's CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS. Better luck next year, Woody.

THE EXTRAS

This Blu Ray might as well not have any special features.

On the Red Carpet (3:30): A couple brief interviews with Emma Stone and Parker Posey from the film's premiere that cover the basics (their characters, working with Allen, etc.) As generic as you can get.

A Photo Gallery and Theatrical Trailer are also included. That's it.

FINAL DIAGNOSIS

IRRATIONAL MAN has its moments, along with some solid performances, but it ends up being a fairly minor Woody Allen film. A rental at best, or just rewatch one of his older, better movies that explore similar ideas

Extra Tidbit: Joaquin Phoenix put on 33 pounds for the role, just because he thought that's what the character would be like.

Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

Best Selling

| March 2017 More Best Selling
  • 1
    Fantastic Beasts
  • 2
    Sing
  • 3
    Moana
  • 4
    Doctor Strange
  • 5
    Fifty Shades Darker

Featured Youtube Videos

Views and Counting