Beautiful Boy Reviews
Having not read the source material this may immediately mean less to me, but the structuring of this story as its done in the film doesn't help. It's not hard to see what the film is trying to do in telling the two parallel perspectives of the father and the son caught in this battle with addiction, but in doing so what results is a disjointed mess of a movie (at least upon first watch). We never spend long enough periods with either of the characters to garner any real sympathy for them-not until the end anyway when Carell brings it all home.
It's kind of a weird movie too, but worse is the fact it's a boring weird movie. Every single aspect of these people's lives revolves around coping with addiction and addiction itself, but there has to be more in order to have the audience invest in these lives. I adore Steve Carell and Timothï¿ 1/2 (C)e Chalamet seems like a genuinely nice, cool, and grateful kid, but even their strenuous performances feel exhausting and void of any tangible pathos.
There are some similarities between these two more recent films. "Last Flag Flying" is the story of a father who loses his son in the Iraq war and only wants to bury him while he lives his mourning alongside fellow friends of the Vietnam War. "Beautiful Boy" is the story of a father, a family, but very focused on this father, who deals with his son's drug addiction. In both Carell's work is accurate, touching and with the safety of veteran experienced dramatic actors.
His David Sheff is one of the strengths of "Beautiful Boy". The other is the work of his colleague Timothee Chalamet. At just 23 years old, the actor has been consolidating himself as a strong name in cinema with ever better performances. Chalamet had already drawn attention in the drama "Call Me by Your Name" (2017), when it was the young Elio, who fell in love with an American writer, his first love. In "Beautiful Boy" he brings the necessary dramatic charge to Nic's story and does not fall into the exaggeration of the daydreams of madness by the use of drugs so frequent in films reporting this type of problem.
Nic's pain is absurdly palpable. Your desperation to get out of it too. Depression interspersed with moments of false joy, for it was known how much Nic suffered from within, are alive in Chalamet's eyes.
"Beautiful Boy" is a hard movie to watch. A real story about a family that had everything to be perfect and is dredged by the drug problem. Especially the use of methamphetamine. But at the same time it is of a unique beauty, or perhaps difficult to describe by showing this strength of the relationship between father and son. An almost unbreakable force even when David sees the need to leave the scene to recover. And how beautiful Carell's work is by carrying all these nuances with her.
And at this point it is necessary to speak of another fundamental question in the construction of this story: the edition of the film of Felix van Groeningen, the same director of "Alabama Monroe" (2012). The idea of ??building a fragmentary history with bits of past and present mixing together was risky, could cause confusion, but it was very well done. In her, we gradually understood that relationship of love between father and son, the way Nic immersed himself in drugs, moved away from his father, his mistakes, his comings and goings, the bottom of the pit. A structure that brought to the film moments of pure poetry.
"Beautiful Boy" speaks of a very serious subject, the chemical dependency, but without falling into false moralisms. On the other hand, it is also a movie about the force of love. The love of a father for his son, for a whole family for this son and for never giving up. Even when everything seems lost. And it still has an excellent soundtrack.
'Beautiful Boy' is a melancholic look on parenthood and the tragedy of watching loved ones dissolve away under lethal drugs. Based on David Sheff novel (by the same name) which documents his son addiction. Hard to sink in, but harder to forget.
Timothee Chalamet was magnificent in this movie and proves that 'Call Me By Your Name' wasn't just a fluke for him. Chalamet went in-depth in terms of preparation, such as: losing 25 lbs for the role and advice a doctor on set to ensure his acting as a drug addict was authentic - all his effort paid off beautifully. While Nick cause plenty of problem towards himself and his family, yet isn't portrayed as some villain for the audience to hate, just humanized enough to understand his struggle.
However, I thought Steve Carell was the biggest stand out. While Chalamet had the most showy scenes and material for him to be more talked about, but Carell's performance, in my opinion, was just more powerful. I think it's the quietness and natural presence that makes him believable. By placing yourself in the parent shoes, it makes for a devastating thought. Whenever Carell yelled, I must admit, I heard Michael Scott from 'The Office', but that didn't distract too much from his performance. When he cried, I cried with him.
The editing choices is quite bold, to say the least. Like take Jean-Marc Vallée style of editing, but set to overdrive - which is my biggest issue with certain cuts, especially at the beginning where it jumped between flashback and present day. After awhile it calmed down and show relevant scenes. Felix Van Groeningen approach to film making and writing brings a raw look on drug addiction while following some narrative cliches. Although I see this as an actors movie, as he allows the two leads to create their own characters within this world.
Also, the soundtrack-like structure didn't bother me that much despite the handful of complaints from people. I view the soundtrack as a visually way of showing the character's emotional state depending on the music choice.
Overall rating: It's got flaws, but still translates novel into a visual powerhouse. Nothing like 'Requiem for a Dream', but convinced me to never do drugs.