Monday, September 19, 2011

"Restless": a career nadir for Gus Van Sant

Gus Van Sant has made some terrific pictures, including several of his recent, more under-the-radar works: "Elephant," "Gerry," "Paranoid Park."
 The new flick "Restless," though, is just awful: a waiting-for-her-to-die love story between Dennis Hopper's boy Henry, who sounds ridiculous even talking about love (and gives one of the worst debut performances in memory), and Mia Wasikowska, so full of life in this year's "Jane Eyre" that you wonder what the hell she's doing here. Full of jerky camera movements - not as in hand-held, as in adjusting on the fly to bring the actors into view - the movie looks like it was shot through gauze, and features a wordy soundtrack that's annoying throughout and at times offensively inappropriate.
Full of ornithological trivia, meant-to-be-meaningful pouts that just look petulant, and the talking ghost of a Japanese kamikaze pilot, "Restless" is precious to the point of nausea. I hated every minute of it.

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