Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is a 2014 American comedy–drama film co-written, produced, and directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu, the Mexican famous director who was almost winning the Oscar for Babel. I didn’t like Babel, it was too hard and heavy for my taste. Otherwise, a very good concept, with that shotgun and the circle.
[source of all pictures: imdb.com]
Birdman stars Michael Keaton (former Birdman, actual Riggan Thomson) , Zach Galifianakis (his lawyer and friend, and and also producer), Edward Norton (an actor), Andrea Riseborough (Riggan’s girlfriend or mistress or both), Amy Ryan (Riggan’s former wife and his daughter’s mother), Emma Stone (Riggan’s daughter), Naomi Watts (another actress, involved with Norton’s character), and “Rome”‘s Servilla (I have specified this because I’m a big fan), Lindsay Duncan (the New York Times’ drama critic, the fieriest of all American drama critics).
You remember Keaton as the first modern Batman, Tim Burton‘s Batman, don’t you? The one with the Joker played by Hollywood’s Casanova Number Two, Jack Nicholson, right? Now, Batman, Birdman, it’s the same, it’s a metaphor. I liked it. You don’t learn too much from it, it’s merely entertaining and entertainment (it wants to be called a “black comedy”, but it is a comedy all right, somehow, sort of…).
Very good performances, Edward Norton and Ema Stone deserve the nominations one hundred percents.
Actually, this is the fourth movie I’m reviewing just for the following Oscars event, in a sort of marathon. The only movie I reviewed for pure pleasure, no matter what will happen at the end, I mean, on February 22’nd, was Wes Anderson‘s The Grand Budapest Hotel.
Birdman seems a mockery of Batman, the irony being that it was one of Keaton’s former roles. Here, he hears a voice in his head, like his conscience, but with Batman’s (or Birdman’s if you like..) intonation, a rougher scrambled version of his own. He is an actor quite famous for that, but seems to be forgotten, because he never went out of that for real. We can take some others like him, just to prove this point. George Clooney was Batman, and he has extracted himself from that playing role models for United State presidents and politicians. He won an Oscar for Supporting Actor, in a political and very interesting movie which quite said something even if it was pure fiction. Christian Bale is the most recent Batman. Extracted or not, from the Batman’s conscience, he also won an Oscar for Supporting Actor, for one of the best performances of his life, after pulling one of his already famous tricks of manipulating his own body, like a sacrifice for the art.
Now, this movie is about Keaton, a Batman who wants to prove the world (and especially the critics), that he is an actor and more than that, not Batman. So, he invested all his money to rent space on Broadway and put together a play, an adaptation after a famous short story, making everyone aware again of his acting, and more than that, of his directing, writing, casting, and producing capabilities.
It’s good, it’s entertaining, it’s in vain, it doesn’t says much but is very nicely done and the acting is brilliant. A little strong dialogue (I normally don’t mind it if it’s not gratuitous, which it was), but otherwise, all in all, a good movie. I don’t know about Oscar, about Best Picture, it won the Globe for Keaton It may also win the Best Directing for Mr. Iñárritu and I wish the Best Supporting Actress for Ema Stone, freaky enough to stir her peers to vote her.
Just 119 minutes, it’s a presence in imdb‘s Top 250 of Best Movies of All Times with an 8.3 rate out of 10.
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