Movie Review: Birdman (2014)

Birdman posterPlot: A washed-up actor, who once played an iconic superhero, battles his ego and attempts to recover his family, his career and himself in the days leading up to the opening of his Broadway play (IMDb)

Rating: 8/10

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It seems like Birdman will be one of the few movies I dislike and everyone else likes. It just wasn’t all that in my eyes and I don’t really get the hype. I can see why it has critics weeping with happiness – it is original and offbeat, which makes it refreshing to watch. The cast is stellar – Michael Keaton is at his best, Emma Stone continues to be my favorite young actress and Edward Norton has enough talent to leave you feeling whiplashed. The plot develops at a great pace and nothing is left untouched, except perhaps that open end that had me irritated.

Birdman isn’t to my taste, and I think that is mostly the reason I didn’t love it so much. I thought between this and The Theory of Everything (the other major film of last year), The Theory of Everything was much better. I can reason that it is here purely a matter of preference to me and that is why I feel like this. I do think that Keaton’s performance was just as excellent as Eddie Redmayne’s, and if the Oscar went the other way it wouldn’t have been unfair.

Birdman Emma Stone

My favorite parts were everything with Emma Stone in. Her acting range is wide and she is fantastic as the weird rehabilitated rich kid. She and Norton share a trait that I enjoy – they flip a switch and their performances are immediately intense – they both have this seemingly inexhaustible level of raw emotion locked inside of them.

I experienced the film as very angst ridden. It has a nervous energy to it and the musical score makes you want to go and check if you did all your homework. I read that the film was shot in this way to specifically achieve that stressed atmosphere, and therefore director did a good job with what he planned. 

Birdman was good and I think there are plenty of people who will really appreciate everything that it has to offer, but it really isn’t something I will watch again.