Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is a (labeled) black comedy staring Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Emma Stone, Naomi Watts, and Amy Ryan. The film is directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu. It’s about Riggan Thomson (Keaton) as he tries to stay relevant in the entertainment biz as an aging actor.
The good; the rumors are true and the movie is almost entirely one whole continuous shot. It’s a technical marvel at how they were able to achieve this. They really hid the edits well, so well that I stopped paying attention on where they were.
Michael Keaton does a great job. His acting is superb, along with everyone else in this film. It almost feels as if Birdman is a biopic in a roundabout sorta way. The principal actors are playing something close to themselves or something they did in a previous role.
The soundtrack is great, it uses a drum score by Antonio Sanchez, and it works wonderfully.
The bad; I kinda wanted more of the Birdman stuff. Not sure why it had to specifically be Birdman, it could’ve been a totally made up hero like Bird-Hawk or something… not sure what was gained in having it be Birdman??
There wasn’t enough levity in the movie, having a balance between the darkness and some comedy might’ve helped with the overall heaviness of the film.
Overall, I enjoyed this film. It’s very meta and reminiscent of 8 1/2 and All That Jazz. It’s a commentary on the entertainment and critic business, but I would’ve liked a decision one way or the other regarding the stance the film took on the entertainment industry and actors in general. I smell an Oscar nom for Keaton.
And the ending is open ended enough (ambiguous), it’s either a happy ending or a sad ending depending on your view of life.
It’s amazing that this is a Fox Searchlight film, bravo for acquiring a good film, instead of the crap that 20th Century Fox normally cranks out.
Oh and one more thing, Damian Young shows up in this movie, you may remember him as Bus Driver Stu from The Adventures of Pete and Pete.