Fresh from its red carpet premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, word was mixed to positive for David Cronenberg‘s “Cosmopolis,” his suddenly of-the-moment adaptation of Don DeLillo‘s acclaimed novel featuring a pretty good leading turn by Robert Pattinson. The film opens in Canada this weekend and the U.K. next week, but don’t worry U.S. fans, you won’t have to wait too long.
eOne has set an August 17th release for the movie that will certainly be quite different from your standard summer fare. While our man in Cannes gave the film a glowing review, in particular noting that fans of the book will be pleased, this writer caught the movie this week and has some words of caution. If you haven’t read DeLillo’s novel, “Cosmopolis” can be a slog, and it’s not aided by the lousy production values either (the film looks pretty ugly, not helped by the shoddy digital camera work). Shot in Toronto, barely any effort was made to disguise the locations that are supposed to pass for New York City. But if Cronenberg fans thought the much better (and underrated) “A Dangerous Method” was too talky, they ain’t seen nothing yet.
Cronenberg doesn’t make much of an effort to try to break up the story that is set mostly inside a limousine and the result is a film that becomes maddeningly static. Add to that lots of obtuse, severely mannered dialogue about the economy and sex and you have a film that moves at a snail’s pace to a payoff that is telegraphed a mile out, but doesn’t feel all that rewarding for the journey to get there. The gallery of supporting cast members are only in the movie for brief scenes except Paul Giamatti, who gets an extended sequence that unfortunately highlights the film’s main shortcoming: it feels like watching a bunch of people recording an audiobook.
But hey, give it a shot yourself when it opens on August 17th in New York and L.A. (it will expand to more cities in the weeks following). If anything, it’ll be a way to get out of the heat. [IndieWire]