Sunday, October 2, 2022

Pearl (2022)

Girl meets boy, boy fucks off to WWI and leaves girl with her shitty German immigrant parents in the middle of Kansas, chaos ensues.

I don’t love or hate this movie, but it’s interesting to study. The film makes a valiant effort to present character melodrama with the vibrancy of multi-strip color. It achieves all that and more, but my biggest complaint with this performance-oriented picture is how the performances are put to film. The directing and editing soured my experience somewhat, and the film feels like it runs at least 10 minutes too long.

I went out of my way to appreciate this movie. The least it could do is entertain me, which it did in the first half. Then it bored the fuck out of me, so I call it break-even.

The film’s pleading desperation for emotional impact is its greatest weakness. Despite long sequences of monologuing (complete with *surprised* reaction shots), it failed to provoke any reaction from me when I watched it. Aside from an ice cream sandwich, all I got out of my viewing was a list of talented stars who will undoubtedly move on to more entertaining things.

As a film about crazy, this movie doesn’t get it. If you want crazy, ride your local city bus. Mia Goth is fine, but all the characters around her are pampered, oversensitive, and paranoid. I’m way past this movie’s crazy threshold, and I’ve met a lot worse. What you get here is a lot of talking in rooms, and the audience is expected to listen for all the stereotypical sociopath things if they don’t fall asleep first.

Let me repeat that I don’t hate this movie. I think it could be great if the talking were cut down, the reaction shots were cut altogether, and the kills had more gore. Tarantino could do Mr. Ti’s work a lot better.

Blame politics, blame California, blame the old fuckers that can’t handle real avant-garde cinema. This is another soft one that’s over-the-top in all the stupidest ways.