In a nutshell, the boys got what they wanted- “Keira got her boob out!” was all I heard on the car journey home, as if their sad little lives were complete. I let out a rather enthusiastic “WAHEY!!” when I saw Michael Fassbender’s name appear in the credits which turned a few heads, basically we were seen as a load of obsessive fans and an exception in the older, middle class audience that night. Mind you it was Odeon, so maybe not.
Despite the star studded cast and my three scoops of Ben and Jerry’s (after half a year of non-consumption I was eagerly anticipating my phish food!), the film didn’t exactly float my boat. My expectations of a psychology version of a Beautiful Mind were certainly unfulfilled. Considering the plot, the play it was based on and the sheer amount of talent at hand, it fell short of what I thought it really should have been in my opinion. If someone asked me to analyse the relationship between Jung and Freud, which I thought the film was meant to be about, I would have not been able to tell you much. It got to the point where I didn’t understand who the main characters were meant to be, I’m not stupid; I mean I got my head round Tinker, Tailor, Solder, Spy, but the plot was both cluttered and simplistic at the same time.
I knew I was meant to sympathise to Jung’s situation, especially towards the end as he sits on the bench, eyes gazed and watching the scenery of the lake but I didn’t. In a way, as a member of the audience, I felt rather guilty for not sharing Jung’s sadness in the matter but again it is the job of the script, direction and performance to make me feel enticed and engaged with those characters.
I’m rather disappointed to say, as thrilled as I was to have finally have watched this film, it draws no comparison to the lights of Knightley and Fassbenders’ other works. Jane Eyre, and most certainly Shame captured me and made me feel apart of the story. Fish Tank definitely made me hate Fassbender with a passion for a good week. Atonement was so powerful that I was close to tears (which never happens) and again I hated Knightley’s manipulative character in Never Let Me Go. Their ability to make me, the audience, to feel such powerful emotion towards their characters just proves of the their talent, I wish Cronenberg utilized their potential more efficiently. (That last comment was so economics-y)