Latest Entertainment News Headlines

Review: Carnage

Carnage
12.06.2011
3 10

PLOT: Two sets of parents (Jodie Foster & John C. Reilly, Christophe Waltz & Kate Winslet) meet to discuss a school-yard fight involving their two sons. What starts off as a cordial meeting soon devolves into a drunken, childish shouting match- proving that for all their sophistication, the parents are just as childish as their children.

REVIEW: CARNAGE is my first exposure to Yasmina Reza’s play GOD OF CARNAGE. Based on all the buzz it’s been getting, I was expecting a probing, insightful piece of drama that would justify the comparisons it’s been receiving to the great WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINAL WOLFE. Yeah, right.


CARNAGE is exactly what my plot description makes it sound like- one long, not-so-interesting conversation between two boring couples. Oh, I’m sure director Roman Polanski, and playwright Reza expect us to find them fascinating, but I didn’t find them to be in the slightest. Reilly and Foster, I suppose, represent Reza’s idea of the “common-folk”, meaning dad sells plumbing supplies that somehow allows him to own a sprawling Manhattan apartment and collect twenty-year-old scotch, while mom stays home writing a book on Darfur. Ya know- just like all of us- right?

Waltz and Winslet represent the so-called sophisticates, with Waltz constantly on his blackberry, and Winslet spending a good chunk of the 75-minute running time puking.

As for the conversation, it tries to draw parallels between the schoolyard brawl and man’s general predilection for violence. I suppose there’s a point to be made somewhere, but for me Reza’s script just hit all the wrong notes. I’m also somewhat offended by the fact that a reported $25 million was spent shooting something that takes place in a single setting- as the film should have really cost a fifth of that (I assume the budget went towards star salaries).


The cast is full of blue-chip actors, all of whom I consider myself of fan of- but here they just come off as phony. This is particularly true of Jodie Foster, who’s normally one of my favourite actors, but is just wrong here. As her spouse, Reilly fares a bit better, but I couldn’t help but wish they had kept James Gandolfini from the original Broadway cast. Winslet is ok, I suppose in her role, but again- she felt phony. Waltz acquits himself well as her husband, and of the cast, is the only one that really feels right in their role.

Suffice to say, CARNAGE really didn’t work for me, but considering the raves the play (as well as the film) have received from other critics, perhaps it’s just a personal thing. If I had the chance to see it with the original, acclaimed Broadway cast, I might have felt differently- but for me this is one of the big fails of the Oscar season. Hopefully people won’t be blinded by the fact that it’s Roman Polanski (meaning, of course, that we’re supposed to like it even if it’s not good), and reward it with a bunch of award nominations it doesn’t deserve.

CLICK IMAGE TO OPEN GALLERY & SEE MORE PICS...

Extra Tidbit: My top 5 Polanski's: CHINATOWN, ROSEMARY'S BABY, MACBETH, FRANTIC, THE PIANIST. Runner-up: THE GHOST WRITER.
Source: JoBlo.com

RECOMMENDED MOVIE NEWS

MORE FUN FROM AROUND THE WEB

Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

8:40PM on 12/18/2011
I'm sorry, but this reviewer got it completely WRONG. "Carnage" is one of the year's best. The cast is brilliant; Winslet is, as always, flawless...she's hilarious (and plays drunk better than most actors). Reilly and Waltz were fantastic. But Foster stole the show...she was a riot and was more than up to the task of this challenging piece of theatre (and now, cinema).
It's unfortunate this critic just clearly didn't "get it".
I'm sorry, but this reviewer got it completely WRONG. "Carnage" is one of the year's best. The cast is brilliant; Winslet is, as always, flawless...she's hilarious (and plays drunk better than most actors). Reilly and Waltz were fantastic. But Foster stole the show...she was a riot and was more than up to the task of this challenging piece of theatre (and now, cinema).
It's unfortunate this critic just clearly didn't "get it".
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+1
2:19PM on 12/10/2011
Saw the play last month and I absolutely loved it, it was dark and hilarious. Can't wait to see this.
Saw the play last month and I absolutely loved it, it was dark and hilarious. Can't wait to see this.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+16
10:53PM on 12/06/2011

Uh-Huh....

And the Footloose remake got a fucking 9/10. Whatever lol.
And the Footloose remake got a fucking 9/10. Whatever lol.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
6:36PM on 12/06/2011

bummer

was looking forward to this
was looking forward to this
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
2:16PM on 12/06/2011

NO WAY!!!

i must say i'm shocked that you feel this way about the film. it really delves into the human psyche and reveals who people are, and more importantly, who they become when placed in certain situations. other than foster, who i thought was phoning in her role, reilly, winslet and waltz were all perfectly cast. i was especially happy to see waltz in a non-"hans landa" role. i definitely have to rank this one with macbeth and chinatown.
i must say i'm shocked that you feel this way about the film. it really delves into the human psyche and reveals who people are, and more importantly, who they become when placed in certain situations. other than foster, who i thought was phoning in her role, reilly, winslet and waltz were all perfectly cast. i was especially happy to see waltz in a non-"hans landa" role. i definitely have to rank this one with macbeth and chinatown.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+7
1:50PM on 12/06/2011
Wow, I'd have to disagree completely. I enjoyed it quite a bit. Great performances all around. My full review will be published sometime around the 16th.

My fav Polanski is easily The Pianist, followed by Macbeth and Chinatown. I recently saw Knife in the Water, Repulsion, The Fearless Vampire Killers, and Cul-de-sac, but didn't really care for any of them enough to recommend them. Ghost Writer wasn't bad, but still not good enough to recommend. I've never understood why people like
Wow, I'd have to disagree completely. I enjoyed it quite a bit. Great performances all around. My full review will be published sometime around the 16th.

My fav Polanski is easily The Pianist, followed by Macbeth and Chinatown. I recently saw Knife in the Water, Repulsion, The Fearless Vampire Killers, and Cul-de-sac, but didn't really care for any of them enough to recommend them. Ghost Writer wasn't bad, but still not good enough to recommend. I've never understood why people like Rosemary's Baby so much. I've seen it twice and found it to be an absolute bore both times.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
12:22PM on 12/06/2011
Great Top Five, Chris. Still haven't seen his Macbeth, but Chinatown is my all-time favorite movie. A pity about this one. I can definitely see how Gandolfini would've changed things significantly here.
Great Top Five, Chris. Still haven't seen his Macbeth, but Chinatown is my all-time favorite movie. A pity about this one. I can definitely see how Gandolfini would've changed things significantly here.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
12:13PM on 12/06/2011
I'm really surprised to read such a negative and low scoring review. Have heard nothing but great things about this film. I'll wait and see I guess.
I'm really surprised to read such a negative and low scoring review. Have heard nothing but great things about this film. I'll wait and see I guess.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
View All Comments

Latest Entertainment News Headlines


Top
Loading...

Featured Youtube Videos

Views and Counting

Movie Hottie Of The Week

More