Release Date: December 22, 2017
Director: Alexander Payne
Writer: Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor
Cast: Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau, Kristen Wiig, Rolf Lassgard, Ingjerd Egeberg, Udo Kier, Soren Pilmark, Jayne Houdyshell, Jason Sudeikis, Maribeth Monroe, Phil Reeves, James Van Der Beek, Alison J. Palmer, Tim Driscoll, Kristen Thomson, Kevin Kunkel, Patrick Gallagher, Linda M. Anderson, John Reynolds, Carmen Orellana, David Noonen, Bob Bezousek, Ana Marie Cox, Roland Martin, Milo Goodman, Dave Sokolowski, Michael Heathcote, Martha Girvin
MPAA Rating: R
Runtime: 135 minutes
Production Company: Paramount Pictures, Ad Hominem Enterprises, Annapurna Pictures
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi
Language: English, Spanish, Icelandic, Norwegian
Country: Norway, USA
Budget: $68,000,000 (estimated)
I’ll give director Alexander Payne credit for the concept of Downsizing. It’s interesting to say the least, especially when tireless echoes repeat themselves in comment sections of movie blogs and sites that there isn’t much original content in the theaters anymore. Unless it was overlooked, I can’t remember where the idea of shrinking yourself to five inches to save the planet has ever graced the theater.
It’s a wild idea, and while it appears to be in every way, shape, and form unrealistic, and illogical, I thought it is interesting enough to see what it was all about. Sure enough, the transition from big to small in the film was the most enjoyable. Seeing how society reacted to such a change was an appreciated small reflection of the other side of the fence to see if the grass was a tad bit greener. There were a few laughs, some surprises, and turned out to be a possible solution with the words, “A Last Resort,” highlighted, underlined, and printed in bold font. But after the initial transition was over, it was nothing more than a paper-thin movie which appeared to use construction paper for the set designs.
There was no real conflict or repercussions that still related to the real sized world after the downsizing took place. After our lead character Paul Safranek (Matt Damon) went small, so did the interest in the film. The pacing was all over the place, the time jumps, and transitions for certain scenes were abrupt, and skipped around as if the film had hiccups. I cared for the outcome at first, but the film never delivered. The laughs stopped, the story became dull, and there ended up being nothing to look forward to towards the end. It was as if a whole new team came in to finish the film, after the first quick on the job, or ran out of important things to say or do. Other than being completely bored after the first hour, there isn’t much more I can complain about in the film, but I haven’t walked away unsatisfied, after a promising start in quite some time.