Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Jim Jarmusch Doldrums On With Only Lovers Left Alive

Only Lovers Left Alive opened with a series of spinning shots that, between the motion and the sound mixing, made me ridiculously dizzy. And my filmgoing experience never recovered.
It's not to say that I was dizzy or uncomfortable the whole time, rather it felt to me as though Jim Jarmusch was simply trying to annoy everyone he managed to get into the theatre. In pulling together such an excellent cast (Tom Hiddleston, Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska, John Hurt, Anton Yelchin, and Jeffrey Wright) he legitimately got me excited for what could only be a very interesting take on Vampires... only to thoroughly disappoint me with a two hour script that could have been condensed into twenty minutes. There is practically no plot to be spoken of. And while an attempt was made to build an incredibly dense history of this vampire world, it quickly became evident the film was simply on repeat. By the time something "important" (and I use the word lightly) did happen, I was completely beyond caring. And while the music element was consistently being hyped up throughout the film, there was never any legitimate payoff for that idea.
At this point I'm willing to come out and say this... I don't like Jim Jarmsuch's films. I've only ever seen one that I enjoyed (Broken Flowers), and even that one sticks in my memory mostly for having one of the worst endings I've ever seen. I'm a cinephile, but I don't know that I have it in me to give the man any more chances.
Only Lovers Left Alive is a sloppy, boring film that wastes its exceptional cast in meandering anti-plot. It left me with a feeling that I had just been watching a boring couple spend an entire evening complaining and not going anywhere or having any fun with each other. And that does not a good film make.

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