film

reviews










 

Vanilla Sky (2001)

Director:
Cameron Crowe
COUNTRY
USA
GENRE
Drama/Mystery/Sci-Fi
NORWEGIAN TITLE
Vanilla Sky
RUNNING TIME
136 minutes
Producer:
Cameron Crowe
Tom Cruise
Paula Wagner
Screenwriter (based on "Abre los ojos" by A. Amenábar):
Cameron Crowe


Cast includes:

CHARACTER ACTOR/ACTRESS RATING
David Aames Tom Cruise
Sofia Serrano Penélope Cruz ˝
Julie Gianni Cameron Diaz ˝
Dr. Curtis McCabe Kurt Russell ˝
Brian Shelby Jason Lee
Edmund Ventura Noah Taylor
Thomas Tipp Timothy Spall ˝
Rebecca Dearborn Tilda Swinton
Aaron Michael Shannon

 

Review

I've always had somewhat of a problem with movies that base a lot of their existence on confusing its audience by including dream sequences that are camouflaged (or not) as reality (or "reality"). Is it a clever and ingenious move, or is it simply confusing, insipid and unconvincing? With Cameron Crowe's Vanilly Sky, you're left wondering this question, which basically means that there are some vigour to the story, but that it's not altogether compelling. Crowe's direction is that of a creative music video director. He does create some scenes and backdrops early on that are absolutely gripping. And the early drama that unfolds - digging into the highly interesting character of David Aames - is both forceful, significant and effective. Unfortunately, after developing a series of interesting character relations, Crowe can't quite maintain his movie's relevance once he delves into his mystery and starts toying with the fantastic. It's not so much the idea in itself as it is the way it is conceived that is the problem. In the end, there's way too much explaining that needs to be done, and way too much explaining that is done. We might actually have been better off left in total disarray.

That doesn't deprive the film of its assets, however. The performances are fine all over, with the film having its best moments depicting the friendship between Tom Cruise and Jason Lee. The latter's appearance helps keeping the film grounded numerous of times, just when you think it has gone off completely, Lee's earthy and charismatic persona lets us know were alright. Unfortunately, in the end, he too is demolished by Cruise whose character goes from exceptionally interesting to a total spoof over the course of the films two hours.

Copyright © 15.7.2005 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang [HAVE YOUR SAY]