I'm Not There.
(Todd Haynes, 1999)
If I could draw, this review would take the form of a four-panel comic strip, capturing my thoughts as I watched I'm Not There.
from the comfort of my couch.
- The first panel would be labeled The First Thirty Minutes, and the thought bubble above my grinning would read, "Masterpiece!" as I simultaneously exclaimed out loud, "Richie Havens!"!.
- The second panel would be labeled The Next Ninety Minutes, and the bubble above my quizzical look would read, "Hmm..."!.
- In the third panel, labeled The Third Act, I'd thoughtfully rub my chin and say, "Huh."!.
- And in the final panel, I'd shrug and smile.
From what I've read, the Richard Gere/Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid
/Masked and Anonymous
section caused viewers the most consternation, but for me it was actually the Heath Ledger section that most disrupted my engagement. These scenes are wonderfully filmed, and the performances by Ledger and Charlotte Gainsbourg are lovely, but they never quite fit with the film as a whole. The problem, I think, is that this section belongs not to Ledger's Dylan-twice-removed character (which is distancing enough, but still interesting at a theoretical perspective) but rather to Gainsbourg's character, Claire, who doesn't feel of a piece the movie's already strained, web-like structure.
Anyway, I'm Not There
was definitely deserving of its Filmspots for Supporting Actress (Blanchett) and Ensemble Cast (even David Cross more of less worked), and it probably should have made more of a dent in Kickass Scene ("Goin' to Acapulco" was near perfection) and Line ("All they want from me is finger-pointin' songs. I only got ten fingers.") — though it's hard to know which lines to credit to the script and which to Dylan himself. I'm glad it lost the Editing award, if only for the one cut connecting Bruce Greenwood's two different characters.
Very glad I finally caught up with this movie.Grade: