There are movies that you hate, despise. There are movies that you’re passionate about and just can’t stop thinking about. And then there are movies you want to like but just can’t. Birdman is one of the latter. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great movie, with great acting and directing but somehow I couldn’t connect to movie the way I wanted to. I believe Birdman shouldn’t have gotten the nomination for the best picture at the Academy Awards.
The movie basically revolves around a washed-up actor Riggan Thomson (Played by Michael Keaton) who is trying to stage a comeback via self-written, self-directed and self-produced play on Broadway. Riggan is shown as a typical yesteryear Hollywood superstar who is known for his iconic role of the Birdman. The Birdman is supposed to be his ‘real’ self. His egocentric nature and his complacent attitude towards the truth causes him to become delusional. He thinks he can move and control things with his mind (Hey! I love Michael Keaton, but he ain’t no Jedi). He has this voice in his head, the voice of the Birdman telling him what to do, advising him about his crucial life decisions. His delusions cause the viewers to think about the rejection and ignorance that causes former-stars to turn into psychomaniacs. Or did he not turn into one? Through out the movie there were subtle hints that Riggan might actually possess these powers and at the end of movie, the plot takes a very interesting and intriguing turn.
The story is based upon how Riggan is trying to set up his own Broadway production on a play based on love. He hires Mike Shiner (Played by Edward Norton) who again is a delusional egomaniac, who believes he has the art of acting completely figured out and goes onto give the crazy or rather insane touch to the movie which may work for some of the viewers and completely spoil the flow for the others. Riggan’s failures in life are displayed by his daughter, Sam (Emma Stone) being shown as a rehabilitated ex-drug and alcohol addict and various cameos by his ex-wife Sylvia Thomson (Played by Amy Ryan).
The movie’s plot is very bland and docile at times and it becomes difficult for viewers to stay interested (my mother fell asleep in the first 45 minutes). The premise of the script leaves the viewers in ambiguity because they know nothing about Riggan apart from the fact that he played a superhero in a film a few decades ago. For a script that is solely based upon Riggan’s past coming back to haunt him, they show nothing about his past. The dialogues were placid and not at all worth remembering. Zack Galifianakis is shown as a ‘serious’ lawyer/producer with a decent sense of humor, which is kind of hard to digest considering the comical roles he has done in the past. The acting otherwise is exceptional. Michael Keaton is on the path of becoming one of the industry’s legends if he isn’t one already. Edward Norton has probably given the performance of his lifetime, the disparity between his performance in this movie and in The Incredible Hulk is astronomical. Emma Stone as usual is beautiful, charming and adaptive in her role. All the individual nominations that the actors of this movie have received are thoroughly deserved. A better plot and a better form of expression would’ve done wonders for this movie. But that’s just my opinion, what do you guys say?
My rating for Birdman: 6.9/10