Thursday, January 24, 2008

I'm Not There (Todd Haynes, 2007)

***½
USA



In gravely simplistic terms: Marcus Carl Franklin is plucky pre-teen Dylan; Ben Whishaw is early 20s art-wank Dylan; Heath Ledger is womanising matinee idol Dylan; Cate Blanchett is mid-life-crisis-filtered-through-Fellini's-8½ Dylan; Christian Bale is solemn, tortured, born-again Dylan; and Richard Gere may or may not be aging, increasingly benign outlaw Dylan.

It's a tricky conceit - too murky and underdeveloped to be branded a success but too much of a blast to be dismissed as a failure. Even the sections that don't really work - which is most of them - are absorbing.

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