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Youth Without Youth
DVD disk
05.07.2008 By: Sturdy
Youth Without Youth order
Director:
Francis Ford Coppola

Actors:
Tim Roth
Alexandra Maria Lara
Bruno Ganz

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
An elderly man is struck my lightning and finds himself getting younger rather than older. He soon meets and falls in love with a woman who has issues of her own and together they realize they can help each other.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
YOUTH WITHOUT YOUTH was all over the place. In an effort to create a powerful, existential film about religion and life, the great Francis Ford Coppola created a jumbled mess of a movie that lacked meaning and left the audience puzzled. There were moments and scenes in the film that didnít make sense at all and served little to no purpose to the overall story. Unfortunately, this was not the grand return for Coppola that I was hoping for.

At first, I was going to write ďI didnít get itĒ somewhere in my review, but then I paused and realized that would imply it was somehow my fault the film didnít make sense. I donít think anyone will ďgetĒ this film because Coppola has created a film that isnít ďgettableĒ. It literally makes no sense at all and doesnít even try to offer an explanation to any of the events on screen. Just when you think you might have a handle on whatís going on, it takes a turn and goes in a completely different direction. Itís almost two different films, neither of which have any structure or arc.

On a positive note, the cinematography and scenery had flashes of Coppola. Itís not nearly enough to make the film watchable, but at least there are signs that what made Coppola so great is still hiding in there somewhere. Iíve heard that the book this film is based on is very good, so I canít imagine itís as empty as the movie.

No one could have done a better job with the script, but Tim Roth didnít seem like the best choice for this role. Although intense, Roth isnít an emotional actor, especially not one required to pull this character off. But again, the lack of character depth or background isnít Rothís fault. Everyone else did fine, and I was impressed with the lovely Alexandra Maria Lara. I had never seen her before and I thought she gave a good performance, even if I didnít understand her character.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Francis Ford Coppola: Coppola gives the best commentaries and he really seems to enjoy giving them. I like him because he tells you what happened and why it happened. This track is no different and he goes into great detail during the film. I really enjoyed this track and it put the film in a brighter light.

Making of Youth Without Youth (8:41): This is pretty much a fluff piece to promote the film and all of the comments are pretty generic. All of them say the right things, but again, I didnít see the results on screen.

Music For Youth Without Youth (26:49): Iím not sure why the music gets a 27 minute featurette and the making of the entire film only gets 9 minutes. Anyway, this had a lot of movie scenes with the music highlighted. I found it to be very boring, but the score to the film wasnít bad.

Youth Without Youth Makeup (18:02): Again, we really didnít need 18 minutes dedicated to makeup. Either way, this one focused on the makeup in the film and the methods they used to make the characters look older. This is the better of the three featurettes because it contained more behind the scenes featurettes and had more interesting subject matter.

There are also some Previews
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I know fans of Coppola will be interested in seeing something of his after the long hiatus, but this isnít what they had in mind. Something went wrong here and this movie is just one wrong turn after another. I would stay clear of this one.
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