Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Phil sees Carnage at the CinéArts Theater Santana Row-January 22, 2012

After I saw THE IRON LADY at the Camera 7 Pruneyard, I made my way to the CinéArts Theater in Santana Row to see the new Roman Polanski black comedy film CARNAGE, which is based on the play God of Carnage by French playwright Yasmina Reza.

Theatrical Movie Poster (2012)
When two grade-school boys get into a confrontation in the park that results in one boy hitting the other in the mouth with a stick, their parents meet in a Brooklyn apartment to discuss the matter. The parents of the boy wielding the stick, Alan and Nancy Cowan (Cristoph Waltz & Kate Winslet), visit the home of Michael and Penelope Longstreet (John C. Reilly & Jodi Foster), who are the parents of the boy who was struck. What begins as a civilized meeting turns into utter carnage as both sets of parents bicker and fight with one another, thus reducing themselves to childish behavior.

It's been a long time since I've seen a Polanski film. Now what makes this such a genius film is that the film takes place in one location (minus the exterior shot of the park that are the bookends of the film). The entire film is set in the Longstreet's apartment, which is actually a set built on a soundstage. But that's what makes this film so amazing is that we can be contained in one setting for 90 minutes and be utterly entertained. Now it helps to have a great script (which this film has), have four very talented actors (again a plus), then have a legendary film director to bring it all together.

This is what many critics call a black comedy. It deals with real life problems and situations and finds humor in these uncomfortable and confrontational surroundings. Now like I said, it helps to have talented actors to make the characters in these situations believable and funny. Waltz is lawyer we love to hate who is also an absent father who cares very little about what his son did. Winslet is the superficial wife who gets really drunk and throws up during the movie (which by the way, Winslet still looks very sexy while projecting vomit all over the Longstreet's coffee table). Riley is the father that is passive and doesn't give a damn about anything, especially about Foster's obsession to writing her book about the hardship that is taking place in Africa.

Ploanski's directing in the film is perfect. Just absolutely perfect. The framing of his scenes, the over the shoulder shots, the scenes where we see Foster in the foreground but we see Riley in the mirror behind her, which show us that he's on the other side of the room. Just little tricks that he uses to create the space that these people are forced to inhabit in during their get together.

CARNAGE is already my favorite comedy for 2012! You don't get too many great black comedies these days and here's one that is just hilarious to watch! Highly recommended!! Five out of five stars!!

CARNAGE is currently playing in select theaters nationwide, including at the CinéArts Theater Santana Row here in the Bay Area. To view showtimes, visit their website at http://cinemark.com

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm this sounds very interesting. I wonder how long it'll take to make it's way out here. Love Kate Winslet. She can do no wrong in my eyes.
    Thanks for the review, hun. This sounds like a fun flick : )