I look at the list of Oscar nominated films and I’m stunned. The chill accompanies me too. There are some that I have not seen yet, although my ignorance does not keep me up at night. Well, I have a certain and understandable illusion about what Steven Spielberg has done, talking about his childhood and Sam Mendes’ memories of the cinemas of his adolescence. But the rest invites depression. If this represents the best vintage of the year, you better stop feeling nostalgic about visits to the dark room. I am invaded by the sensation of nothing here or nothing there.
The credits of The whale They only appear at the end and I did not have any information about her. In other words, I see it without being accompanied by prejudices (I have many, and many of them are justified) or references. The only setting in which it takes place is a house and almost everything happens in the living room. It is inhabited by an immensely fat man (I think the correct term is morbid obesity), mortally ill, devastated, trying to find some peace with his past, to obtain forgiveness from a rabid daughter who felt abandoned by him, to remember the fullness that ever felt in his troubled life, regret the damage he caused to the people who were close to him. He is a professor who teleworks, any physical or mental effort he makes causes him a lot of pain, he is pathetic. He is also sweet, touching at times. He is obsessed with Captain Ahab and Moby Dick, protagonists of one of the darkest and most beautiful novels ever written. And he does not stop talking, although he also knows how to listen.
Very sorry for the dying state of this man, celebrating that the sister of her suicidal boyfriend takes care of him and makes him feel less alone, knowing that her daughter will finally get rid of her aggressiveness towards her father, recognizing the extreme sensitivity of someone who wants to adjust honestly accounts before leaving, I can’t get too excited about his tragedy. There is a theatrical tone that distances me. There are situations and characters that I find forced. I admit that he has an intense lyrical vocation, but he doesn’t infect me, he doesn’t cause a lump in my throat, I don’t get too involved.
When I finish I discover that it has been directed by Darren Aronofsky, a creator praised to the point of delirium by much of the critics and who generally unnerves me, with the exception of the very twisted Black Swan and the tough and compassionate The fighter. I admit that he always tries to be original and disturbing, as long as he gets results. In The whale There is nothing that irritates me excessively, although I am not passionate about it either. It stars Brendan Fraser. Also the monstrous prostheses that deform her body. She belongs to the gallery of characters for whom the acting Oscar has always felt a weakness. They will probably give it to you. And it wouldn’t be unfair. His body is frightening, but his face and his voice express various sensations with talent, sensitivity and magnetism. It is what I like the most The whale.
Direction: Darren Aronofsky.
Distribution: Brendan Fraser, Sadie Sink, Samantha Morton, Ty Simpkins, Hong Chau.
Gender: drama. United States, 2022.
Duration: 117 minutes.
Premiere: January 27.
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