As if the proliferation of Oscar-baity crap and all-out January- dumping-ground garbage smearing screens all over the U.S. weren’t enough, now comes a literal film turd. One of those short and sweet ones that doesn’t involve a lot of wiping. Bubble, Steven Soderbergh’s self-proclaimed “experience” (which in Sodertalk must mean “horribly failed experiment”) opens this week. Luckily, you can see it on 3 mediums at once with a space-age new distribution process that allows us to see a bad movie concurrently on DVD, cable, and theatrically (I’m a daring cinephile and will try all three at once…report coming Monday morning! ) A neo-neo-neorealist film in which Soderbergh feigns compassion for the working class yet treats them like bugs under glass, forcing nonprofessional actors to squirm uncomfortably for 72 minutes (same length, approximately as Bambi…rent that instead) for our delectation…er…uh…I mean shudders of recognition about the mundane lives of the working classes. Yeah. Luckily, small minded townsfolk don’t need narratives that engender thought or discussion, so a dime-store murder mystery plot will suffice.
Don’t be suckered in by its scant running time, and go see the new cut of Malick’s masterpiece The New World, out this weekend again, finally. That film’s 135 minutes soar by with a majesty unseen in American film for many a moon….Bubble on the other hand, feels like a fucking eternity.