Reviews & Counting
# 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
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Marc Forster

Ewan McGregor/Sam
Ryan Gosling/Henry
Naomi Watts/Lila
8 10
New York head-shrinker Sam (McGergor) sees his reality bent, broken and bitch-slapped when he takes on Henry (Gosling), a suicidal art Student as one of his patients. Arrow sings: “Excuse me while I kiss the sky!”

Henry: I burned myself. Sam: You burned yourself? Why?
Practicing for hell.

When STAY was put out theatrically, it vanished out of theatres before I got around to seeing it (in my parts anyways). Now that it’s available on DVD, I finally got to catch up with this intriguing little thriller and came out of the mud ring far from disappointed.

STAY was yet another celluloid back-hand of the mind-f*ck kind. You know the drill boys, girls and pets! We’re presented with a reality, the film shakes & bakes it as we move forward and the cap-off finally reveals what in Athena's name was “truly” going on. I must hand it to this gal, she had me fooled like Anna Nicole Smith swindled her rich 90 something husband for the bulk of its running time. I felt like I was being grilled by the Riddler throughout! And that wasn't all, the manner in which the film communicated its unstable and surreal reality was one for the books as well! I’m talking dream like, stylish and fairly kinetic directing, beyond unique scene transitions (loved the morphing from one character to the next), the sly repeating of sequences, the use of the same background performers and more that I won’t reveal…you do your own work and figure them all by your lonesome. I was so disoriented and relished every second of it!

With that thrown your way, STAY was more than pretty pictures, innovative style and groovy shots, it was also a well acted, thought provoking and touching effort that addressed themes that we all relate to: regret, love, regret, regret and more regret. I’m gonna level with ya here, I teared up a few times during this ride and I mean, teared up like a man bitch that lost his mommy, his diaper and his "Snake Eyes" GI Joe doll . Was the film that moving? Maybe…but I can assure you that I had my own shit going on and the affair ably tapped into it. Yes...I related...OUCH! When you add to all that flavor a truly novel score that totally blew me way in its uniqueness, bleak gorgeous locations (Brooklyn Bride, that’s staircase), striking symbolism and a top notch cast on top of their game... you get quite the little masterpiece that beg the questions “Why didn’t it get more attention when released?” and "When did Ryan Gosling get so kool?"

On the slim water in the drink side of the Rum and Coke, the reason behind the madness not only felt a tad too familiar as I’ve seen it before in films of this ilk but it also didn’t fulfill when looking back…specially when it came to one of its lead characters and his relation to it all. Maybe I missed something or maybe that was the point but it hurt the movie for me. Personally, I would’ve done the ending a tad different, hoped for something a tad different and didn’t get that tad different. Then again, what do I know, I think crack whore jokes are the be all and end all of creativity much like that crack whore that used my face as a bar stool yesterday…YOU SEE!

All in all though, STAY was a breath of fresh dead air and all should be proud of the accomplishments that is this picture on a visual, audio and meat standpoint. Think a morbid yet striking LSD like trip (not that I ever tried the drug, I sniff glue…just kidding) and I for one (or two or three…all depending how many of my personalities are at play) just couldn’t take my pupils of the screen. You going to stay with STAY (here I go being clever again...urg) or are you gonna dump it on the curb?

Wet some minor bloodshed, nothing to get jacked up about.
By rule of thumb, I like Ewan McGregor (Sam), he has a sympathetic aura about him, is always credible, even when wrestling with his Yankee accents. Here was no exception. Ryan Gosling (Henry) has come a long way from his “Breaker High” days. Here, he showcased more of his masterful grasp on the “Young Brando” art of brooding while being totally convincing. Naomi Watts (Lila) looked good and was on the ball! I would’ve liked to have seen more of her in this film.
T & A
None that I can remember one way or another, unless the Jenna Jameson "spread eagle" poster on my wall counts.
Armed with a great editor, director Marc Forster buttered the toast on both sides with purpose offering up novel shots, hypnotic atmosphere, brilliant scene transitions and arresting imagery. This film look f*cking good, plain and simple!
The subversive score by Asche and Spencer touched me and rocked me in its uniqueness and emotional resonance. Great job duders!
STAY was a distinctive audio/visual experience that has to be seen to be believed. Tagged with compelling substance and Grade A acting, the film had its shotgun fully loaded in terms of blasting me away to “I loved this shite” oblivion...until the ending kicked in. It wasn’t what I wanted or all that it could’ve been if you ask me. Still a solid watch though!
This was David Benioff's first sold screenplay. He banked $1.5 million for it. He is now writing the Wolverine movie.

Marc Forster also directed Monter's Ball and Finding Neverland.