21 February 2010

The Messenger

Directed by: Oren Moverman
Written by: Oren Moverman & Alessandro Camon
Full credits at IMDb

Once again, the Oscar [nomination] goes to... the big, brash, brawny performance! In The Messenger, that comes courtesy of Woody Harrelson, whose character has the thankless task of delivering news of army casualties to the dead soldier’s Next of Kin. He’s as emotionally unmoveable in his duties as a Buckingham Palace guard—no tears, touching, or stutters—as you might expect from a character named [S]Tony Stone. (Why not Rocky Rock?) Gee, I wonder if he’ll break down and cry by the end of the movie? Anyway, the better turn comes from Stone’s new partner, Will, played by Ben Foster...It’s a much quieter performance, characterized more by welling eyes than scenery chewing, all the more surprising as it comes from Foster, who I know more for bouncing off the walls in Alpha Dog or going full retard in Freaks and Geeks.

Foster, of course, has to tone it down because epic emotions and high-volume drama are all around him, provided by the family members to whom Rocky and Will must deliver bad news, most of whom blame, as in displace their anguish and rage on—wait for it—The Messengers...

Keep reading my conversation with Benjamin Sutton at The L Magazine.

Watch the trailer:

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