Gary Shaller is at a crossroads in his life his job is going nowhere, his wife, Dora, drives him crazy, and he passed his thirtieth birthday four years ago. Add to that his best friend Paul seems to become more successful every time he breathes. Gary is feeling depressed and dejected... until he meets Anna. Shes beautiful and smart shes sexy and funny. Best of all, shes crazy about Gary. Anna is the girl of Garys dreams...literally. And thats the problem. Gary can only see Anna in his dream life, so hes got to find a way to carry on the most satisfying relationship of his life, in his dreams. His quest for lucid dreaming techniques introduces Gary to some crazy characters who ultimately give him a new perspective on life.
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I see that this movie isn't well-received. . .? . . . ---I loved it!I like dark humor, and subtlety, and a script that trusts the viewerenough to simply suggest what's happening, and this movie satisfies allof that. Written and directed by Jake Paltrow, starring a mostlyBritish cast of Martin Freeman, sister Gwyneth, Penelope Cruz, SimonPegg, and Danny DeVito in a strange ensemble none of whom seem toreally know one another. There's a sense that this movie isn't reallyhappening, that the characters aren't sure who or what they are to oneanother, that the action may or may not be delusional: dream?not-dream? the boundary edges of reality have been softened or erasedto the point of ambiguity. I believe this is what the director wasstriving for, and he got it perfectly. I am still reeling by the few comments I saw that disliked thismovie--- --were we watching the same flick? Jake has captured the ennui and uncertainty of intimate relationships,especially when artistic personalities are involved. Wishes are faded,hopes for success, mega- or otherwise, are withering or stunted, andthe concept of "dreaming" becomes itself part of the uncertainty of thestoryline---an uncertainty purposefully part of the script. We live ourdreams, we get caught up in our dreams, yet our dreams exist oftenaside from how we live. And who's to say what's real? Is nightconsciousness less or more than daytime consciousness? Nothing is 100%real.I don't want to give anything away. I hate spoilers if I haven't seen amovie, and don't want to even accidentally mention something that woulddetract from another's enjoyment of discovery. Freeman's character isgoing through a minor meltdown, his life increasingly one on theoutside looking in. He's "married," but the love and desire hasdiminished for both of them. He seeks help from a most unlikely (andmost unprofessional) pseudotherapist, DeVito, and the reality of hislife begins to unravel as he struggles the more to make sense of itall. It is a brilliant study of a mentally ill and conflicted worldwith pervasive fears and worries. The cast is excellent. Couldn't bebetter.I love this movie. I love its dark humor, and its subtlety. Well done,Jake!
If indie dramas are to believed, there are essentially two reasons whythere is so much unhappiness in the world (at least among the moreprivileged classes who have the time and resources to think of suchthings): a) people can't stand the idea of being alone in the world,yet they also can't stand the idea of being with another person forlong stretches of time either, and b) it's hard to come to terms withthe contrast between what we imagined our life would be like and whatit actually turned out to be.A case in point is "The Good Night," a mid-life-crisis drama with asurrealistic twist. Gary is a songwriter/musician who used to be partof a band but who has now been reduced to writing commercial jinglesand scores for second-rate TV shows. A somewhat de-glamorized GwynethPaltrow plays Gary's nagging long-time girlfriend who's definitelybecome disenchanted with their relationship, while the ultra-glamorousPenelope Cruz stars as the literal woman of his dreams Â until shematerializes and becomes a part of his waking world that is. In fact, afairly large chunk of the movie's running time is taken up with Gary'sdreams, which inevitably feature this alluring figure who stands inobvious counterpoint to Dora's flesh-and-blood imperfections. And thenthere's Danny De Vito as the scene-stealing New Age dream-whisperer whoattempts to maneuver Gary through his crisis.The point of the film, written and directed by Jake Paltrow (brother ofGwyneth), seems to be that ideal worlds and ideal relationships existonly in dreams, and that, if you want to survive and maybe even find alittle bit of happiness in this life, you had better start acceptingsome compromises and limitations and not, as Voltaire once opined, makethe perfect the enemy of the good. Even Gary's dream-woman iseventually unmasked as a relatively pedestrian fashion model whodefinitely does not live up to the dreams and fantasies Gary has abouther before he meets her in the actual flesh.The movie does a nice job transitioning back and forth between theworld of reality and the world of dreams, and the actors demonstrate anastute understanding of the roles they are playing. Some of theconversations and arguments the lovers engage in are almost toopainfully realistic at times, with Dora, in particular, unloading herfeelings on Gary to withering effect.It's not exactly a world-shaking human drama, but it offers someinsightful observations into those maddeningly messy things weeuphemistically call "romantic relationships."
The idea is interesting enough. A musician in his thirties suffers froma major dip in his career and his relationship. But instead ofaddressing these problems, and have a serious talk with his girlfriend,the main character is more interested in explaining his childish dreamsof a hot brunette. I didn't feel gripped for one minute by the story.And at the end, we are supposed to believe that Gary has surmounted hisproblems because the dreamgirl has said she for one believes in him. Hecomposes a piano tune, gets one more chance from his girlfriend, andthat's that. By the way, why has Paltrow used the documentary form? Wasthere anything to make a documentary about? The guy broke his leg, forheaven's sake. That's not to say there's nothing enjoyable about thisfilm, but it's very little. It's okay if director's debut doesn't smashbox office records or win three Palms in Venice. But Paltrow should digdeeper into his subject before making any other movie at all. No matterhow good your cast is (and it's pretty decent), without good ideas, anyfilm is bound to disappoint.
Often defined (where noticed at all) as an 'understated' movie, I willgive this film that. Understated. Often being direct but ungarish aboutwhat it has to say, The Good Night is led by Gordan Freeman along witha top tier grab bag of both UK and American acting talents. In so faras the film is a comedy it's not likely to make many laugh outside theoccasional appearances of Simon Pegg and the even more infrequentcomedic lines thrown his way. As a romance it's fairly basic andunfortunately underdeveloped, but the plot of that romance isinterwoven into what is otherwise a film about a bored and unhappy manlooking for fulfillment.Protagonist Gary Shaller, a failed musician writing commercial jingles,ultimately seeks that fulfillment in the expression of his music and toa lesser extent in his relationship with his girlfriend. Being unableto find it in either he escapes into the sexual fantasy of his dreamscausing friction in his relationship. As he delves deeper into thepractice of lucid dreaming, those dreams ultimately begin to questionhis values, what he really wants and what truly inspires him.It is not an unlikable movie, primarily due to it's suspiciously highcaliber cast. Were this an indie movie starring a less talented,charismatic or well known throng of people, the fleshing out of it'sscenario would not likely be as entertaining as it ends up being andwould probably be overlooked and forgotten along with so many otherindie films, many of which would deserve more praise than this.The film breaks fundamental rules of storytelling, sometimes that canmean defying convention and making it work, this is not one of thosecases. It exhibits some of the most clichÃ©d thriller tricks in thebook, one trick in particular and the romantic relationship betweenGary and Dora fails to establish a history and much if any dynamic orfuture, yet the whole film revolves around it. Scenes with either SimonPegg or Danny DeVito while possibly meant to be funny are often barelysaved as such by their respective players if at all and on paper wouldread like a dead fish. Lacking much of anything deep or meaningful andtaking it's time to get there this film is more of just a middlewithout much a begging or ending, instead capping itself with tricks tobookend what begins as abruptly as it finishes.All in all though, the basic premise while being nothing really specialor new in essence, is executed as best as it could be. Well shot, wellacted and although some see the movie as boring, I'd say well paced.One of the few films that's left me so conflicted as to what I thinkabout it due to an almost perfect ratio of pros and cons seesawing backand forth. Not revolutionary, not new, not perfect for sure, butentertaining for what it is and looking past it's flaws and what itlacks, overall enjoyable. If this review seems kind of blandunenlightening and wishy-washy, overall downbeat and only speckled withpositive aspects, that'll give you some idea of the movie.
Saw this one.... loved it. Variety sums it up perfectly."Sweet dreams, indeed. As becalmed and refreshing as a good night'ssleep, writer-director Jake Paltrow's first feature delves assuredlyinto the mind of a lost soul who literally encounters the woman of hisdreams. Though its forays into the subconscious may strike moreadventurous cinematic palettes as precious and unimaginative, few willbe able to resist Martin Freeman's appealing lead turn or the wry Britwit that gives this fanciful confection a robust comic core. Given theright push emphasizing its marquee names, "The Good Night" could hitsleeper status. Compared to David Lynch's convulsive dreamscapes andMichel Gondry's "The Science of Sleep" - all films that seek to strandthe viewer in an impenetrable chain of dream logic -- "The GoodNight's" fascination with hallucination and reverie doesn't go muchdeeper than the surface level. Fortunately, it's an enchanting surfacethat doesn't wear out its welcome for a good 93 minutes.Puzzling mock-doc prologue introduces a trio of characters discussingthe life of sad-sack musician Gary Sheller in tones of hushed regret.Of the three, only Paul ("Shaun of the Dead's" Simon Pegg) plays a partin the story that follows, set two years earlier.Gary (Freeman) is a thirtysomething Londoner now living in New York, anice but hapless bloke with all the detritus of a movie midlife crisis.Since his band broke up seven years ago, he has eked out a livingscoring TV commercials, to the increasing chagrin of his mildlydepressive live-in girlfriend Dora (the helmer's sister, GwynethPaltrow). Even worse, Gary's friend and former bandmate, Paul, is doingquite well for himself in an advertising career.Given Dora's irritable demeanor and Gary's tendency to aggravate it bysaying exactly the wrong thing, it's no surprise that their love lifeis mutually unsatisfying. So when Gary starts having recurring dreamsabout a beguiling mystery woman (Penelope Cruz) who seems to offer moreof herself to him every night, they have a rejuvenating effect. Wantingmore, he takes an active interest in lucid dreaming - the act ofbecoming aware of and even controlling one's dream state - getting allsorts of tips from a New Age-y, self-styled expert (an amusing DannyDeVito).Gary's growing obsession with manipulating his nocturnal entertainment- he sound-proofs his bedroom and gets cranky whenever he's awakenedmid-dream - doesn't improve his relationship with Dora; somehow, evenPaul's foolhardy dalliances in cybersex manage to widen the rift.Eventually Dora announces they need time apart and jets off to Venice,leaving Gary to indulge his fantasies to the fullest.But after a wide-awake Gary sees Anna's face plastered on the side of abus, he soon learns she's a real-life model (whose actual name,Melodia, strikes a rather obvious note), and Paul all too convenientlybooks her for a commercial. The foundation for Gary's discovery andface-to-face meeting with his fantasy lover isn't particularlywell-laid, but by this point, the script has set a fascinatingstructural dilemma for itself, and Gary and Melodia's wakinginteractions easily compel one's interest and anticipation.Subsequent plot turns are anything but predictable, and the tale beginsto take on a quiet gravity as Gary's fantasy life is increasinglyinfected by his reality. The moving denouement is both a testament tothe power and necessity of dreams and a bittersweet acknowledgment oftheir limitations.With so many first-time helmers lately piling on the flash and visualgimmickry, the measured pacing and almost crystalline purity of JakePaltrow's direction can't help but come as a soothing relief. Thefilm-making is arguably too tasteful at times; intriguing as they are,Gary's dream sequences are absent any real sense of mystery or danger,and the use of stately fade-ins and fade-outs as delineating markersleads to some rhythmic awkwardness. In "The Science of Sleep," dreamsand reality blurred together inscrutably; here, they exist opaquelyside-by-side.Best known Stateside for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" and theBBC's "The Office," Freeman carries the movie in his sleep, so tospeak, showing terrific leading-man chops in a delightfully shaggy,self-effacing role. Continuing her dowdy-brunette look from "RunningWith Scissors," Gwyneth Paltrow comes through with a prickly, wittycharacterization that, despite a maudlin streak, occasionally lets thesun peek through.Supporting perfs are similarly well handled. Looking as ravishing asshe did in "Volver" (with no small help from Verity Hawkes' splendidcostumes, including one striking white tux), Cruz breaks her so-calledEnglish-language curse with a role that requires her to be seductiveand not much else. Needless to say, she acquits herself admirably. AndPegg, with his crack comic timing, pockets every other scene as Gary'slovable bastard of a best friend.Production design is aces, the predominantly gray scheme of Gary andDora's dreary apartment providing a "Wizard of Oz"-like contrast withthe vivid colors and textures of the film's dreamscape; Giles Nuttgen'scinematography astutely follows in kind. Alec Puro's unobtrusivelymelodic score, which incorporating a tender composition Gary writeslate in the picture, plays an especially significant role.Gotham-set pic was largely filmed in London -- a disjunction that,given the film's Anglophilic bent, almost makes sense."
The movie is amazing on most levels. It's actually a vision into amanic depressed soul who sees a light at the end of the tunnel. Thelight is in the form of the dream girl Anna (Penelope Cruz, who isabsolutely stunning once again in this flick).He has a girlfriend that he has burned every bridge but they still havea deep love blanketed with layers of strife and arguments. Instead ofworking things through the ventures deep into his mind and tastessomething in his dreams that he can get enough of. The dreams starttaking control and start getting in the way, The entire time he feelsthat Anna can save him from his own routine depressed life.The movie starts getting a little weird when Anna walks into his lifein human form.In my opinion this is a great movie for peering into the mind of a semipsychotic depressed soul. Exactly what a film should do, make you thinkon different levels.
"Intriguing and offbeat." That's what Jeffrey Lyons said. "Bland and milquetoast." That's what Ken Jensen says. I gave this 50 minutes and finally decided I was pissed that my 50 minutes were gone. Gary, the upset with his relationship and life, male lead, just disappointed me as a human. It's almost like he wasn't good and depressed enough. I could've respected him more if he'd been more dedicated to his bad feelings. He just existed without any passion in any direction. It was like watching a whine being personified. I realize being depressed can do that very thing to a person but I guess seeing it was making me mad. The fantasy chick was petite and hot, but it added nothing; Danny DeVito was his usual, everyman self but it didn't matter; Simon Pegg was amusing and seemed like someone who'd make you laugh when you hung out but it didn't matter. The whole thing was just upsetting me with its dull flatness. The movie was generating mildly bad vibes in me with no justification. Bleh. If you still want to see wierdness that's upsetting but entertaining, look for a Lynch flick instead.
Jake Paltrow's 'The Good Night' tells an interesting story revolvingaround dreams. I liked the creativity that was used in this movie andthe concept behind the story. What if life has become so dull and sadthat one prefers living in their dream through lucid dreaming? Thestorytelling is pretty tricky as it hints and suggests without exactlyrevealing until the very end. In between the main story, the film jumpsinto interview scenes with Gary's friend, ex-girlfriend andex-bandmember talk about him. The dream sequences are very wellexecuted. I liked how Penelope Cruz's voice was modified to suit Ana(who is a figment of Gary's dream). The screenplay is solid. MartinFreeman does a superb job. Simon Pegg is first rate. Penelope Cruz iswonderfully sensual. Gwyneth Paltrow does a fine job and Danny De Vitois terrific. Music is an important component of the film and 'The GoodNight' is provided a brilliant score. This is a unique little film thathad me engaged throughout its running time and I may pay a revisitsometime later.
I'm an American living in Prague and was so moved to see this film. Itbuilds with a steady, undying attention to the details of arelationship we don't normally comment on to an end that literallyjolts you out of your seat. I haven't seen a film like this in a longwhile. It's stuck with me for days. Rarely do you see someone confrontdepression, the search for one's talent and a longing for somethingmore in such a sophisticated form. It explores the human condition asmovies once did. It makes you dream. The actors take on roles we havenever seen them in. Danny DeVito as a destroyed man lost in his brokenmind, Simon Pegg as a hilarious trouble maker, Gwyneth Paltrow as abrunette who's tired of her stagnant life, Penelope Cruz as a dreamgirl out of a European fantasy, michael gambon and jarvis cocker asguest narrators with a harsh wit and its star, the disappointed andfractured Martin Freeman lost in his dreams.
This starts like a very boring movie. Even the very start it gives thatvery best feeling of boring. But actually that is the director's point.Gary's life is really boring. The movie starts you get in from the"Good night, I love you" repetitions which are really feels like emptyinside. This is the turning point of the film. Although the charactersare not very well drawn in this movie, it is really a very good one.Speaking philosophically the movie just sits on the right place. Thedreams and the actuality. It gives very good tunes of ordinary livesthat we live. In that very ordinary lives it gives the escape pointsand the over all imagination. The movie has shocking points as well.But whatever missing could there could be much more fun. Gary's friendmakes some good jokes but that is it. Go watch it it. It is a good oneabout your life. This is a personal film for you.
A tale of a man who finds himself learning how to make his dreams more real and therefore spends more time in them than reality. His living existence is on the bland side with a nagging, pessimistic girlfriend and a group of low energy friends. There are some interesting scenes here and there about why we should stay in reality if the dreaming is better and even a change around of love interests for the main character but it suffers greatly in that it tends to me more vignettes and half focuses than a fully fleshed out tale. That said, it was engaging enough for me to finish unlike lower quality films. WHEN WATCHED: end of July 2011; STORY/PLOTTING: C to C plus; CHARACTERS/DIALOGUE: C plus to B minus; LUCID DREAMING FOCUSES: B minus; OVERALL GRADE: C plus
The Good Night is Jake Paltrow's first attempt at writing anddirecting, and stars Martin Freeman, Gwenyth Paltrow, Penelope Cruz,and Danny DeVito; a star-studded cast! The movie opens with a group ofpeople partaking in a 'This Is Your Life' or 'E! True Hollywood Story'style show about Gary, a former popstar and member of a pop band. Garynow composes jingles for an advertising company, and is married to Dora(Paltrow), and is still good friends with for band mate Paul (SimonePegg). As Gary's marriage unravels, he begins to have lucid dreamsabout a beautiful girl, who at first hasn't got a voice, but beautiful,luscious hair and full lips, who later reveals herself to be Anna(Cruz). Gary goes to a lucid dream class to figure out what his dreamsmean, and meets Mel (DeVito). With the help of Mel, Gary goes in searchof Anna, the girl of his dreams, and meets Melodia, who looks just likethe woman in his dreams.You'd expect a story like that would be fascinating and hard to drawyour eyes away from, but it's on in the living room as I write this,and I can't seem to draw my eyes to it or bother about it anymore! Thecast may be striking and this may be Jake's nice first attempt, and youcan tell the work and thought are there, but there's nothing to back itup; no passion for what is going on, it doesn't draw in the crowd andthe audience isn't hanging onto the cast's every word!
I didn't know anything about "The Good Night" when I turned it on...andI'm still not sure that I know what it was supposed to be about. MartinFreeman (of "The Office") plays Gary, a former pop star now in apseudo-relationship with Dora (Gwyneth Paltrow). It looks as if hislife is truly going nowhere, when he starts having fantasies featuringa strange woman (Penelope Cruz) who appears in advertisements. I thinkthat that was the plot.I assume that the movie must be a look at Gary's being nearly at theend of his emotional rope, but I found it a little too weird to reallyfollow. A movie dealing with this topic that I recommend is John G.Avildsen's "Save the Tiger", starring Jack Lemmon. Maybe I would haveliked this one better had they elaborated on how Gary's experienceschange his life - if at all - in the long run. Not terrible, but notone that I would recommend above all others.Also starring Danny DeVito and Michael Gambon.
One of the worst movies I've ever seen. There's not much movement inthe plot if any, so it's basically BORING. The only good thing I couldthink of in this movie is the music... and also the fact that it takesplace in NYC and that's always a nice place to see.The idea that some very known and talented people have worked on makesit even harder to catch how could they get such a lousy result. I guessit's the bad scrip at the end. It's always funny to see how these kindsof films can end up with a good trailer. The idea behind the movieseemed nice as well... both my wife and me are very disappointed. At the bottom line, a waste of time!
My vote is somehow better than I would give if it were not for theacting.The story, I'm afraid is sort of a letdown and in the days of virtualreality seems far too dated. Somebody getting absorbed by his dreamsfeels so obsolete in these days when there are so much more real andeffective ways to dilute your mind.The final catch does not really come as a surprise, it's something like"the perfect kiss is the kiss of death", Gary finally ends his quest -or was it Mel's - and ends up in the perfect dream.I've not yet made up my mind if this movie is a satire, mocking itscharacters, or if it is a more serious drama. In the best case it wouldbe both, in the worst none actually and just talky I'm afraid. Mypersonal view on dreams, which gets also touched in the course of thestory, is that they do encourage you to make them real.
why she is picking movies this these making bad career choices if itwas Nicolas cage i would have loved it because i am a big cage fan & hecan turn a boring movie into fun.you can just forget the plot about this movie & Simon Peg he had nobusiness being there,this film is a waste of timei am not gonna go into the detail & give a spoiler i am just sayingthese actors are great but it their bad luck they don't get goodscripts & roles.id like to warn people specially Penelope Cruz fans please don't buythis film for your own good.the good night becomes worst nightmare .my rating is 1/10 awful film
I'm really not sure where the references to Eternal Sunshine of theSpotless Mind are coming from.This was an extremely well crafted and highly sophisticated film filledwith realistic characters and an unusual message for this day and age.The plot structure and main character of the film appear to have beenmodeled after Brazil. If you like the films of directors like MikeFiggis (Leaving Las Vegas, One Night Stand) and Mike Nichols (TheGraduate, Closer), then you should like this one.This was a good move for Simon Pegg. He's shown that he is capable ofmore than just being "that guy from Shawn of the Dead". I'd like to seehim in more serious roles.
It's pretty obvious that first-time director/screenwriter Jake Paltrowwas heavily inspired by Michel Gondry's surreal, off-kilter work in"The Science of Sleep" and "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" inmaking this downbeat 2007 dramedy. Barely in theaters before headingright to DVD, the film works on an intriguing (albeit unoriginal)premise but is then undermined by a muddy execution and unlikablecharacters despite some nice visuals. The plot concerns put-upon Gary,a TV commercial jingle writer who was once an '80's Britpop star. Hisprofessional life has become a drudge as he begrudgingly works with hisbest pal and former bandmate Paul, who has sold his soul to become asuccessful advertising executive. Meanwhile, life at home is no picnicsince Gary has to suffer from the constant passive-aggressive derisionof his frumpy, needling girlfriend Dora.Into this emotional void, Gary starts to have vivid dreams of abeautiful fantasy woman named Anna, who turns out to have a basis inreality. It's no wonder that Gary seeks the counsel of a "luciddreaming" expert from New Jersey named Mel who helps him find ways toelongate the dreams for fear of having them evaporate entirely. Onceall this is all established, Paltrow lets the film flail around in aseries of frustrating scenes that have Gary turning more and more intoan emotional zombie. Moreover, the marked contrast between Dora andAnna comes across as overstated with the result being completeindifference toward both women. Paltrow also uses a framing device ofdocumentary-like testimonials from colleagues in Gary's past, atechnique that doesn't make sense until the abrupt ending. None of theprincipal actors are terribly remarkable here except Simon Pegg ("Shaunof the Dead", "Hot Fuzz") who brings a much-needed energetic brio tothe comically unsavory role of Paul. His cutting scenes with Gary arethe best the movie offers.As Gary, Martin Freeman (BBC's "The Office", "Breaking and Entering")is likeably dweeby at first, though he doesn't make credible his pastas a debauched rock star. Danny DeVito merely plays a plot device inhis customary matter and not much more as Mel. No matter how gorgeousshe is (and she truly is in this film), PenÃ©lope Cruz is given shortshrift by the script, so much so that her character remains incoherentand incomplete. But ironically, a worse fate befalls the filmmaker'sfamous sister Gwyneth, who has been so deglamorized as Dora as torender her character nearly unsalvageable. Granted there are somefunny, off-the-cuff bits like Dora reacting to Gary's maniacalinstallation of foam over the bedroom windows by asking if it comes inwhite or Gary inexplicably reading "The Idiot's Guide to UnderstandingIraq" in bed, but there isn't enough such cleverness to sustain thefilm. At 93 minutes, it actually feels overlong. The 2008 DVD providesa rather inchoate commentary from Jake Paltrow that is not veryinsightful.
I think enough has been said about the strengths and weaknesses of thismovie, so I'm not intentionally going to add to that. I just for achange want to give a simple and highly personal opinion as a viewer,looking for a nights entertainment with a new movie. I had never seenany trailers or read any articles on the movie so I had no idea what toexpect, but how could I resist a movie with such an interesting blendof some top notch US/UK performers? But that was part of the problemthat I'll come to later.Right from the outset I was disoriented. The context and frame of thestory were laid out using an opening series of documentary styleinterviews with both real and fictional characters. Why? It is afictional story, so adding Jarvis Cocker correctly billed as he is inreal life threw me. It added nothing except confusion and took me along time into the film to realise I was watching a completelyfictional tale and no further real life characters were going to popup.The storyline and performances were deliberately low key, in order tounderscore and enhance the main theme, which was one of escape fromtedium, routine and the commitment required in real life. Because ofthis it is easy to see how Martin Freeman was chosen for the centralcharacter as he is a master of the droll. But, not wanting to takeanything away from any of the fine cast, this created an imbalancewhich played on my mind throughout. Martin Freeman is a good actor andperfect for the part, but would have thrived better if he had beensupported by talented, yet less famous actors/actresses. As it was hewas supported by actors with a much higher Hollywood profile, so I wasalways mindful of upstaging, even if not deliberate. As it turned outGwynneth Paltrow, Simon Pegg and Danny DeVito managed to restrain theirperformances in keeping with the theme of the movie and in deference toMartin Freemans leading role. No easy job (especially for DeVito), butthey managed it well in the end.The premise as it developed was interesting. Quite by accident, MFfound the promise of a life within his dreams that he had alwaysdesired. But could he manage to control it to the extent that he couldinfluence its outcome? Could he find a way that this dreamworld couldbecome his new reality? Thereafter, the premise shifted to whether allof this "perfect fantasy" was in fact a better solution than the realworld had to offer and at the end of that road, how would it change usas human beings? Interesting and challenging enough to entertain, nodoubt. The outcome will surprise few, but satisfy many.Overall, I was entertained and felt that I had good value. I cannotrecall a movie with precisely the same themes as this, however it doesflirt outrageously with many other movies that weave reality withsurreality, such as Eternal Sunshine (as one of the better examples)and because it does not explore any of it's unique aspects to any realdepth, I feel it is impossible not to classify it in this genre.
I'm still not completely sure what this movie was exactly about. Theinitial layer suggests a story about an insecure bloke who tries toescape his run aground life through lucid dreaming. Real life and thedream world coincide as he finds out that the woman he is pushing awayfrom his life is actually the one he wants to stay with. People tryingto dig beyond this layer have some difficulty. Not because this movieis especially deep but simply because there's not much beyond itperiod.Do movies have to be deep or insightful? Of course they don't. But thisone to me suggested it may become that. And when it didn't, it left mefeel a bit dissatisfied.With an interesting story nonetheless, solid acting throughout, somegreat jokes and appealing visuals this movie rises well above theaverage Hollywood production. What it simply lacks are some reallypoignant scenes and build up towards the end. But just like the maincharacter Gary who never rises above himself, the movie doesn't either.But maybe that was the whole point.That said, there's absolutely no harm in bringing this one home for aview.7/10