My Punch Drunk Love review

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Ely, Sep 22, 2002.

  1. David Ely

    David Ely Supporting Actor

    Sep 1, 1998
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    While I have posted a mini review of this film in my thread regarding the 2002 Toronto International Film Festival, I have now writen a full review. I'm sure there will be many who disagree with my review .... so let the debate begin [​IMG]
    There are films that touch you in a certain way, films that open your eyes to new possibilities and new experiences. Unfortunately, Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch Drunk Love isn't one of them.
    Punch Drunk Love allows us to watch an important part of the life of Barry Egan, played by Adam Sandler. Barry is an emotionally unstable young man who has been tormented through life by his sisters. This forces Barry to keep to himself and become withdrawn from the world around him. We're soon to discover there's more to Barry than we're led to believe.
    I won't go on to document the plot as it seems great lengths have been taken to not reveal much about the film. What I will say is that the screenplay is full of weird occurrences that only seem to be there for the sake of being weird. This is the ultimate downfall of the film. Punch Drunk Love becomes an extreme case of style over substance. There is so little substance that audiences will be glad the film lasts a relatively short 89 minutes.
    Sandler's performance in the film is actually quite remarkable. It is the only thing that kept me interested throughout the film. While at first he may seem to be rehashing his previous comedic performances, it becomes clear there is much more underneath the surface. The character is played with an uncomfortable ease, which leads me to believe Sandler used this role to exorcise a few personal daemons.
    The rest of the cast gives sub-par performances. Emily Watson, who plays Sandler's love interest, gives an incredibly dull performance. Philip Seymour Hoffman is no better in his role, which I would have preferred to seen recast.
    When the film ends, it feels as if the audience was robbed of an extraordinary experience. There is so much potential with the characters that go completely wasted. Because of this, I don't suspect it will appeal to a very large audience. Perhaps fans of Paul Thomas Anderson will enjoy this film strictly because it's his work, but most will be sorely disappointed.
  2. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

    Dec 28, 1998
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    Im really looking foward to this one as I think PT Anderson is very talented.
    I read four reviews on the net so far and all were very favorable. This seems top be another film that people will either love or hate.

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