Hurlyburly Film Details
Overview: Hollywood movers and shakers dissect their own personal lives when everything seems to clash together.
Review: i have a difficult time with the blithe dismissal of the film by the other reviewer. the first time i saw the movie, i thought it was all of those things: pretentious, overblown, overlong, etc. but i somehow was drawn back to it a few more times, and as i watched the film more, i began to see the depth that initially escaped me. the thing that changed appreciably to me was my initial assessment of the dialogue as one-dimensional and silly BECAUSE OF BAD WRITING. the truth, if you pay attention to the actual behavior of penn and spacey and palmintieri, is that these characters are one-dimensional and silly because that is truly what they ARE. it isn’t poor writing but excellent that gives the characters these traits. the three main characters are all vapid, burnt-out, self-indulgent yuppie Hollywood efflua – and these people really exist; i’ve met enough of them that the performances in hurlyburly are uncanny. the movie is so deep in some ways that it strikes you as vapid and indulgent – this sounds like terrible doublespeak, but describing hurlyburly is hard. the most important theme of the entire film is that of communication. indeed, penn, spacey, and palmintieri engage each other in circular, solipsistic pontification endlessly for the bulk of the movie, constantly evaluating, re-evalutating, and essentially flogging everything they say or do (spacey’s character, by nature, does this less, but he is perhaps more effective as the level-headed of the three). more striking is that none of them actually pay real attention to each other outside of gathering information that benefits them materially or emotionally – there is no RECIPROCATION. at the conclusion of the film, when penn’s character is half-suicidal and cranked up, sobbing in the hot-tub about how empty he feels, it is the supposedly “useless” tart played by paquin that pinpoints the problem, with characteristic simplicity: the thing that matters is communication and understanding – precisely the things that penn and his friends have no grasp of. one wonders about what happens after the movie ends (theoretically, of course): does penn figure it out and wise up? or does he realize that he and his friends are incapable of this simple alteration, and eat a bullet? some of the greatness of hurlyburly is that this fate isn’t shown to us: hopefully we think on it. now, i know that this sounds like a lot of self-help drek, and to an extent it is, but hurlyburly succeeds even here: even though the sentiment about interpersonal (and hell, intrapersonal) understanding and communication is stupidly simple and often abused, it still ends up being the only real salve to the insanity of the main character’s life. I could go on, but after a bit, my commentary will just confuse things. watch IT or watch it AGAIN. HIGHLY recommended for those with patience.
Duration: 122 min
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Also known as: Sumaištis,Переполох,Hurlyburly,Harmider,Caos mental,Hollywood Sunrise,Ano kato,Zűrzavar,Casting Director,Senli benli,Άνω κάτω,Хърли-бърли,Os Vícios da Cidade,Möll,キャスティング・ディレクター,Descontrol en Hollywood,Bugie, baci, bambole & bastardi,Eddien maailma,À Beira do Caos