July 13, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

“Third Person” Starring Liam Neeson, Adrien Brody A Clinker:

Paul Haggis is one of Hollywood’s most highly respected writer-producer-directors, having racked up two consecutive Best Film Oscars for “Million Dollar Baby,” directed by Clint Eastwood, and “Crash,” which he wrote and directed, winning an Academy Award for both Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay.  

His other impressive screenplays include “Flags of Our Fathers” and “Letters from Iwo Jima,” garnering Haggis another Oscar nomination. 

He was also involved in the writing of “Casino Royale,” which was instrumental in breathing new life into the James Bond franchise and wrote, directed, and produced “In the Valley of Elah.”  

Given his extraordinary excellence, expectations were high with regard to his latest film, “Third Person,” which he also wrote, produced, and directed. 

But alas, into the most feted, a clinker must fall once in a while and, indeed, this film is that.  

Using the “Crash,” template, Haggis wrote three different stories set in Paris, Rome, and New York, with the characters to eventually intersect.  

Disappointingly, what is on the screen are uneven narratives with huge missing plot points that even the most gifted Liam Neeson or Adrien Brody couldn’t overcome and their performances, for the most part, could be described as actors in search of a character.

Briefly, the first story, which takes place in Paris, revolves around Michael, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author played by Neeson.  

He is in the City of Lights to write his next novel, his last few not reaching the literary heights of the first.  

Michael’s love interest is somewhat of a psycho girlfriend played by Olivia Wilde, a budding journalist whose idea of a fun experience is running through a hotel bare-assed naked, much to the amusement of the security guards watching her on camera.  

There’s also Kim Basinger in a cameo role as the suffering wife who, despite knowing about his affair, wants him to come back to New York after he finishes his latest book in which his girlfriend seems to play a big, but perhaps unwanted role, and maybe that’s his reason for keeping her close to his chest, literally and figuratively speaking.   

The second story features Adrien Brody as Scott, a crafty thief who steals Italian designs for an American company.  

He meets gypsy Monika in a bar, played by Moran Atias, whose character appears to have a dubious moral compass and clearly doesn’t wish to be bothered. There is no reason for Scott to pursue her and force his help on this elusive stranger.  

But, despite her protestations, he gets himself involved in her life, meeting some very nasty people along the way.  

Some of the action borders on ridiculous, as there is no logical reason for Brody’s character to embroil himself so deeply in her life, especially when he thinks she and the bad guys might have set up a scam with him up as a mark. 

The third, and perhaps more plausible, is the sequence between James Franco (Rick) a successful artist who paints with his hands instead of a brush, and Julia (Mila Kunis), whose career as a soap star is on the skids and now she works as a cleaning lady in upscale hotels.   

First she’s in Paris and now she’s working in a hotel in New York.  Yes, a bit confusing because we don’t know how she got there or why she goes postal and wrecks a room full of flowers.  

Anyway, Rick has sole custody of their son and because she did something terrible to their son, she is not allowed to see him.  

The most touching, authentic moment in the entire film is when Rick promises her something if she confesses that she did hurt their child, which a very emotional Kunis pulls off.  

However, once she confesses, the promise is rescinded and Rick goes caveman.  Maria Bello as Julia’s attorney waging the battle for joint custody gives a creditable performance considering she didn’t have much to work with.

The technical aspects of the film, however, are spot on with the team consisting of Director of Photography Gian Filippo Corticelli; Production Designer Laurence Bennett; Music by Dario Marianelli, and Editor Jo Francis, who accomplished some nice cross cutting in trying to merge the action.

One could only hope that the extremely talented Haggis has something in the works that’s more in keeping with his very high standard of excellence.

Sony Pictures Classics

Written & Directed by: Paul Haggis

Starring: Liam Neeson, Maria Bello, Mila Kunis Kim Basinger, Adrien Brody, Olivia Wilde, James Franco, and Moran Atias

Running Time: 137 Minutes

Rating: R

In General Release

in News
Related Posts

Summer at Annenberg:Swim Daily and Watch the Sunset

July 12, 2024

July 12, 2024

By Susan Payne A unique, inclusive community destination along the Pacific Coast Highway of Santa Monica is inviting you to...

Kroger and Albertsons Reveal List of Stores to be Divested in $25 Billion Merger

July 12, 2024

July 12, 2024

Eleven Stores in West Los Angeles Among Locations to be Sold  The Kroger Company and Albertsons Companies Inc. have announced...

Pizza Girl’s First Brick-and-Mortar Shop Opens Along Venice Beach

July 12, 2024

July 12, 2024

Its Owner, Caroline D’Amore, Has Made Several Film Appearances, Modeled, and Toured Internationally With Paris Hilton as a DJ By Zach...

This Homeless Santa Monica Resident Saved a Teenage Girl From a Vicious Attack

July 12, 2024

July 12, 2024

City Council’s Commendation for Wilker Was Made at Its Most Recent Meeting on July 9 By Zach Armstrong Santa Monica...

Santa Monica Launches Bitcoin Office to Educate and Innovate

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

New initiative aims to boost digital currency awareness, partnerships, and sustainable mining efforts The city of Santa Monica has unveiled...

Film Review: The Bikeriders

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

FILM REVIEWTHE BIKERIDERSRated R116 MinutesReleased June 21st, Still in Theatres, also online on Prime, Apple TV and other VOD platforms...

Both Drivers Have Been Identified in Fatal Malibu Crash on July 4

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

Collision on Pacific Coast Highway Leaves One Driver Dead Law enforcement officials have identified the drivers in the tragic accident...

(Video) Renowned Soprano Singer to Make L.A. Homecoming at Broad Stage

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

Golda is scheduled to perform on July 13 at 8 p.m. @smmirrornews This Saprano singer is set to take the...

Tartine Bakery Opens Venice Beach Location

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

A Throng of New Menu Items Are Exclusive to Tartine Venice By Zach Armstrong After more than two decades of going...

A Homeless Man in a Palisades Canyon Was Found With a Revolver. Its Property Owner Has Neglected the Site for Years

July 11, 2024

July 11, 2024

The Entire Canyon Is Now a Significant Fire Hazard, According to Officials By Zach Armstrong Within a Pacific Palisades canyon, one...

Council Approves Five-Year-Plan to Improve Big Blue Bus Services

July 10, 2024

July 10, 2024

The Initiative Aims to Expand Operating Hours, Improve Connectivity, and Create More Frequent Service By Zach Armstrong A five-year plan...

Santa Monica Has a New City Clerk

July 10, 2024

July 10, 2024

She Served as Interim City Clerk Since December Following the Retirement of Denise Anderson-Warren The Santa Monica City Council has...

Dine LA Restaurant Week Returns to Celebrate Culinary Diversity With Amazing Deals

July 10, 2024

July 10, 2024

Special Menus at Hundreds of Local Restaurants from July 12 to July 26 Dine LA Restaurant Week will be returning...

Reward Offered for Information on Abused German Shepherd Found Near Malibu Creek Canyon

July 10, 2024

July 10, 2024

Groups Seek Justice for Argon, Dog Discovered with Zip-Tied Mouth and Neck In Defense of Animals and Peace 4 Animals...

Palisades’ Vons Market Among Hundreds to be Sold Under Merger Plan

July 10, 2024

July 10, 2024

The Sale Is Intended to Satisfy Regulators The Vons supermarket in the Pacific Palisades, located at 17380 Sunset Blvd, is...