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I will preface this with a warning: if you are a particularly sensitive person, I would be very very careful as to when you watch it. If I'm feeling "up" when I start watching it, I quickly get dragged down. If I'm feeling "down", I just get pulled down further. Consider watching with a friend.
So the plot. Well, as I'm sure you know by now, it's about drug addiction, obsession, and society - and how those can wreck lives. The main characters are Sara Goldfarb, her son Harry, and his girlfriend (Marion) and best friend (Tyrone). The film opens with Harry stealing Sara's TV so he can sell it to get money for drugs. This sets the scene for a film that starts out fairly bleakly and spirals ever downwards to its inevitable, sickening end.
I have to admit that I found it hard to feel a huge amount of sympathy for Harry, Marion, or Tyrone. Although the way they ended up was horrifying and I wouldn't want that to happen to anyone, they all chose to do drugs and (later) start dealing. Their final states are extreme and awful consequences of their actions.
But the plotline of Sara makes me cry for the injustice of it all. She's an elderly widower, who lives on her own, has few friends, and spends her days watching infomercials. When she gets a call that she could get to be on TV, she does everything she can to make herself look "nice", including taking diet pills. This of course leads to addiction, further isolation, and ultimately madness. I can never feel anything but pity and empathy for her - and anger at her son, because he SAW what was going on, and didn't make any real effort to save her.
The cinematography and music keeps the tension ratchetted up, and you find yourself praying that it'll somehow all turn around, but it never does. This is one of my favourite films, and I think one of the best and most important films ever made, but I can hardly watch it because it feels like being punched in the gut.
This is rated eighteen, but I'm of half a mind to say that this isn't suitable for anyone, any age, anywhere. It's that horrifying. Either that or it should be essential viewing for everyone, I can't decide.
Watching the characters descend into personal drug induced desperate hell is harrowing to say the least. These once vibrant people, full of dreams, are taken to their conclusion in the satanically dramatic last quarter of the film, and it's remarkable to watch.
This film has all the traditional elements of a visual classic; great cinematography, great pictures, great soundtrack, great lighting etc. The plot is only loose. Yet it isn't about any of that that somehow. This is a film that will just affect you profoundly. If I sound somewhat incoherent, its because I've just finished watching it, and I'm almost shaking. It's that good. Or it's that bad. Simply one of the most powerful films ever made.
Excellent movie if a little depressing but drug taking ends up extremely depressing and this movie pulls no punches in its portrayal of what all too often goes extremely wrong. Fantastic performances and the film looks superb in 4k,
It's quite difficult to watch and it's not a nice film to watch, difficult with the repeated daily routines, kind of dizzying... Then when it gets to the end it's even less 'nice' to watch, but at that point it is like oh my... And you feel something, your heads thinking... Not that I'm on that path, but it kinda jolts you and stays with you. Won't be watching it again, should've rented it off AV
This movie is very hard to watch, but it is supposed to be. I won't go into the story as that has been well documented in previous reviews, but like others I must mention that the cinematography is superb. The first section of the film, 'Summer', is gorgeously shot with beautiful use of light and setting. In later stages of the film the cinematography perfectly compliments the story and pace of the movie.
The characters are the most amazing part of this movie, in my opinion. All four main actors give gritty, realistic performances with the standout being Ellen Burstyn as Sara. I cried as I watched her life slip into freefall. A completely realistic and believable performance.
This is a bleak film, and takes you on a fast and furious freefall into the depths of humanity, but in my opinion it is essential viewing.
i have never been more drawn into a film, no it isnt perfect and there are some mager flaws in the mise en scene and mise en shot but so what, when a film makes you feel like this one does you really dont care. i cant give it 5 stars becuase of the fact it isnt perfect but it gets a well deserved 4. the acting is second to none the casting is inspired. i have read the novel and i thought this would not translate well into a film, but in this case i dont mind being wrong. its the dark side of drugs and what they do to people, relationships, different kinds of drugs as well not just heroine or crack. if you want your emotions to be pulled to there very max, watch this film.
If you are curious as to what makes someone an addict this film goes part way to answer that question. More markedly not just a heroin user - a junkie in the steroetipical sense, this story intertwines the main character and his mother, both through very different circumstances become addicts, the consequences for both are devastating. Other characters in the film associated to the lead actor also become addicts with dire outcomes. The camera work is superb. The dialogue honest, vibrant and touching in places. Sureal quality of story telling showing the impact on people who use mind altering substances. a WONDERFUL PIECE OF CINEMA .
Darren Aronofsky's take on the original book is clear to be very pleasing for fans of the book. it recreates the dark, terrifying atmosphere and really takes you through a modern day, MTV generation hell. 30 seconds to mars' Jared Leto is as good as ever and there is a suprisingly good turn from Marlon Wayans. it drags you through the depths of human emotion; the camera work and shots leave you mesmerised. also with a fantastic orchestra creating the score in the penultimate scenes of the movie, this adds to other highlights that make this a truly worhty movie for fans of Trainspotting, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Spun.
Wow - I sat down with my teenage son to watch a movie, and I must say I've just finished watching it and if I was ever tempted at my age to take drugs again, this film would certainly put me off - it was mean and gritty and scarey and honest and all those things together with powerful images and I wish every teen out there would get it and watch it before they take their first line of coke. I loved the links between the mum and the son, drugs whatever shape or form can cause dreadful harm. a fab film just not one to watch before bedtime. xx
Fantastically nightmarish and brutal,this film will stay with you for a long time. Jennifer Donnelly and Jared Leto are superb in their roles. Definitely not a film for the Sound of Music and Rom Com crowd but I love dark edgy and disturbing movies and this one is instantly one of my faves... Highly recommended.