Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011)

From British director Stephen Daldry (Billy Elliot) comes Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Set in New York shortly after 9/11, Oskar, a young boy struggling to overcome his fathers passing, must solve one last mystery; the greatest mystery his father would ever leave behind.

The casting of Tom Hanks caused me to begin this film with great expectations, however, after a short while it occurred to me that he would not be the star of this film but instead it would be Thomas Horn (Oskar). As the film dragged on it became just another film set in New York, leaving the audience feeling like they were only watching it because of it’s fragile themes and back-story. The narrative was a combination of agonisingly slow and incredibly touching. The scenes that I personally found touching were few, so did not out-weigh the other parts of the film that were slow to unfold. However, many audience members have expressed how the film is incredibly moving and a real tearjerker.

Despite the narrative unfolding rather slowly, Horn gives an incredible performance, one perhaps worthy of winning a more coveted award than a Critics Choice Award for best young actor/actress at the Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards. Sandra Bullock (Linda) plays the strong and passionate female figure like she does in many films, which she does well, giving a good and convincing performance. However, it is definitely not her strongest.

The cinematography is also strong, some of the shots and angles used were breath taking and expressive. However, I couldn’t help but feel they would be better suited to still photography as opposed to film.

The soundtrack of the film didn’t particularly impress, however, the narration was well placed in parts. Without which, the film would struggle to climax. When the film eventually did climax, I didn’t know whether to be disappointed or impressed at the unexpected.

Also starring: Zoe Caldwell, Dennis Hearn

Rating: 2.8/5

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