Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Serious Man. A Review.

     It was pretty serious. 
     A Serious Man is listed as a black (or dark) comedy; I won't take that away from the filmmakers, and I could see it at parts, but it just wasn't my thing. Usually I do enjoy a good black comedy.  And I usually enjoy a tale told by The Coen Brothers.  This one just didn't do it for me.
      It is a very well done film.  The shots are beautiful.  It's put together superbly.  I trusted that the filmmakers were trying to tell me an important story.  But it fell on deaf ears, I suppose.  I'm willing to say that this may have been a very good film that just wasn't for me--I was not the target audience.  And really, that's ok.  An overly broad target audience tends to muddy the film anyway. 
      It's also a very small film.  And a very Jewish film.  And I drifted off to sleep for a few minutes in the middle, so maybe I missed something really important.  Except I read through all the plot synopses I could find and indeed, I did not miss a thing.
     What made the characters fit into the black comedy genre also made them unsympathetic.  They had virtually no redeeming qualities, so who cares when their lives fall apart around them?  And I only say virtually no because there is a chance that I'm just forgetting one or two, and I suppose by virtue of being other humans we can assume they have some sort of redeeming quality.  But I didn't see any.  As far as I could tell the main character, Larry, was surrounded by asses and dicks.  He was extremely put-upon, but also, he was put-upon by asses and dicks.  Why would he let that happen, over and over?  Because he's serious?  Nah, it's because he's a giant wuss who won't take control of anything.
     He wants to be serious, though. And I think that was a huge part of the point of the film.  It was sort of about who we want to be, and how we think something is in charge; that there's some sort of destiny leading us down a path.  And when things keep coming up shitty we look for answers, but all we get are stories.
      Overall, I did not care for A Serious Man.  Fine, I'll just say it--I did not like it.  I read a review stating simply "A film worth watching."  I disagree.  

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