Sunday, 10 November 2013

Seeking a friend for the end of the world

Seeking a friend for the end of the world – An interesting one…Keira Knightly and Steve Carrell in a ‘sort-of’ offbeat, ‘sort-of’ comedy about the end of the world. In cheap conclusion… it’s ‘sort of’ interesting. Peter Bradshaw observed that Carrel, with his middle-aged sensible jumpers and disconnected awkwardness, has the unintentional (?) aura of a creepy serial killer. Similar to the unnerving energy of Adam Sandler (perfectly realised by P.T. Anderson, in Punch Drunk Love), Carrel does have a cold and unreadable dimension to his acting, reminiscent of his meloncholy turn in Little Miss Sunshine. The film is at its best and most enjoyable when exploring the widespread panic and unravvelling of suburban American lives. With straight faced black humour we are shown a painfully revealing dinner party, in which marriages wrench themselves apart to reimagine some kind of romanticised pre marital sexual liberty. In the knowledge of the world’s imminent end, suddenly the conventions, structures and rituals of middle class American existence are revealed as absurd, empty and unfullfilling. It is here that the film should have stayed, revelling in the anxiety riddled bachanalia of renouncing normality, escaping the mundane and realising the daily routine for its stifling reality – it takes the end of the world to wake up and smell mortality…and this, this could have been interesting. Meanwhile Carrel is resolutely dull and Keira is kooky, consequently making the end of the world seem an inviting prospect. 5.8/10

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