The film festival season kicked off a couple of days ago with the commencement of Venice Film Festival. The prestigious and oldest film festival in the history cinema hosts some of the most controversial, brilliant and an Oscar buzz generating worthy movies every year. This year, a slew of amazing movies has been submitted and premiered at the festival. George Clooney's Suburbicon is one of them.
Directed by Clooney and written by Clooney-Grant Heslov (combining an old Coen Brothers script The Hollywood Reporter reveals), the film stars Matt Damon playing Gardner Lodge, who is mistakenly identified to be Jewish. Along with him, the film stars Julianne Moore, Oscar Isaac and Noah Jupe. The film revolves around racism, race riots and white privilege.
Though the topic doesn't come at better time considering the Charlottesville's racial attacks, the film has created a buzz of the festival as critics are sharing mixed reactions. While some loved the movie calling it a "well-made" movie, there are others who are slamming Clooney's direction and calling it "suffocating hypocrisy of 50s." Check out what they exactly said:
Giving it two stars, The Guardian's Xan Brooks calls George Clooney's movie a "picket-fence creepfest grows up to be Fargo's idiot child." He points out, "The opening half has a pleasing caffeine edge. It's fast-paced and glossy; we're enjoying the ride. Along the way, Clooney conjures some neat moments of misdirection, pointing the signposts in the wrong direction and forcing his viewer to double back to keep pace." Adding to it, Brooks writes, "At some point, we realise that what we are seeing is the idiot child who would one day grow up to be Fargo. It's been locked down in the basement for the past 30 years. Clooney, damn his hide, just opened the door and threw on the overhead light."
Disagreeing to The Guardian's review, Variety's critic was all-praise for Damon-Clooney movie. Owen Gleiberman writes, "From the moment he began directing, George Clooney has been a stylish, visually rhythmic, avidly engrossing yarn-spinner (the one exception, speaking of irony, is his biggest hit to date, the dud World War II art thriller "The Monuments Men"), and so it is with "Suburbicon." It's a movie that reels the audience in and keeps it hooked: with smart little kicks of surprise, with a sidelong but still highly charged social theme (the perilous cataclysm of integration), and, of course, with the squalid bad behaviour of ordinary people who think that they can wriggle out of their unhappiness through furtive, cut-rate schemes. "Suburbicon" is probably too much of a compact, no-frills genre exercise to have much traction at awards time, but it's enough of a plucky, well-made lark to find an audience.
The Hollywood Reporter:
David Rooney writes for the website and calls the satire an oddly charming movie. "In the hands of director George Clooney, the material has some nasty charms, for sure. But it pushes too hard from the start, then steadily goes off the rails from dark to dyspeptic, lacking the originality, bite or tonal consistency to make up for dipping from a very familiar James M Cain well. Its bigger problem is a timely subplot about virulent racism among white Americans that comes off as a mishandled afterthought," he reviews.
Robbie Collin also gave the movie two stars calling the movie a "wincingly timely" but it is "sour and muddled." His review reads: "It's a hectic, sour and muddled film – a flailing counterfeit of satire that keeps slipping on its own banana skin supply, and never remotely gets to grips with what it thinks it's sending up. Its tone is so unflaggingly bitter, its rhythms so flat-footed, and its adult characters such reprehensible chumps, that you spend the rest of it slumped in your seat."
Writing for the magazine, Guy Lodge feels the movie strikes at America's dark heart. "Clooney's narrow satire comes at a fractious time when none of its quote marks can be taken for granted, though even in a safer climate, the film could stand to check its own tilted perspective. In Venice, it plays. In America, I wonder if the applause will be quite so eager."
The film is slated to release on October 27 in the US and on November 24 in the UK.