Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Starring: Matt Damon, Bryce Dallas Howard, Cecile De France
Review: I am not sure what Hollywood's fascination is with Clint Eastwood, but I really just don't get it. This movie was more than disappointing, and I found myself asking "is this movie for real?" and wishing it would just end.
Clint Eastwood seems content with swirling himself in mediocrity while the rest of Hollywood swoons over his "genius." This movie is just a heaping mess that really had no point behind it. The movie was listless and tried to take it's weak plot and turn it into some sort of revelatory "look at how this all comes together" genius.
The movie centers around three revolving stories that are all obviously careening towards a meeting point soon in the future. We all know it's coming and the movie doesn't try to hide it. Granted, I don't suppose the point of the movie was to make it a secret, but when a movie makes it as obvious as this one does, it takes all the fun out seeing how they come together. As opposed to keeping the audience guessing and interested, instead it just keeps the audience unattached as they just sit back knowing it's gonna happen.
One story line involves a psychic. This is not your run of the mill late night infomercial psychic, our main character is the real deal. By simply touching your hands he develops a connection and automatically is able to see and talk to the exact person you are close to that has recently passed away. Nevermind that it would extremely tough to find the one person in all of the people in the afterlife, forget that just by touching somebody's hands you can get in contact with the one person they are looking for. What if two people close to them have recently died? This movie doesn't dip far enough below the surface to answer any questions like these, no no, this psychic simply does "readings" and always gets it right and always gets the info they want to know.
The other two stories are about a little boy who recently lost his twin brother, and a french newswoman who had a recent brush with death that has piqued her interest in the afterlife. The movie never chooses to go in depth about any of these characters, how they got to their current situation, their motivations, their hopes, dreams, etc. Rather, the movie only gives them enough emotions and dialogue to push the story forward to this eventual meeting point.
The actors themselves don't even seem all that interested in the movie. They go through their scenes flat and uninterested in the characters they're playing. Matt Damon is able to put together a few scenes but he gives up on the movie half way through. The actress who plays the french woman is the best in the film and she is only marginal.
Clint Eastwood is just....[blank]. And I mean that. He does nothing but exactly what you would expect him to do as a director. He gets the necessary performance of the characters to get what's needed, but nothing unexpected. Eastwood get's exactly what you need from the script but never gives anything to the audience that is beyond the words on the page. He is never gonna give a terrible, even this one isn't terrible, but he is never going to wow you or take you somewhere you didn't know you wanted to go. This is his flaw, but this is the reason Hollywood loves him (because he is exactly what you'd expect).
The worst part of the movie though, was the music. Normally the music only adds to the movie and doesn't detract, but this music was awful. It never seemed to be in sync with what was going on in the scene, never seemed to fit the characters right, and had me thinking I was in an elevator the whole time. I honestly cannot believe somebody got paid to make that score. It was just horrible and probably knocked the movie down a 1/2 star on it's own. Seriously, just awful.
I would said that it's not worth your time until it's on cable. Even then only when nothing else is on.