Critic Review - Washington Post

Benjamin Button is little more than Gump by way of Dorian Gray. It plays too safe when it should be letting its freak flag fly.

December 29, 2008 Full Review Source: Washington Post | Comments (5)
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J G.

J Geyer

"Benjamin Button is little more than Gump by way of Dorian Gray. It plays too safe when it should be letting its freak flag fly."


I said almost verbatim, those exact words after I walked out of Benjamin Button.
It was littered with gimmicks and cliches, and the Gump influence was painfully overt, down to Brad's attempt at mimicking Tom Hanks' already sub-par Mississippi/Louisiana accent. On top of all that, there is nothing there of Fitzgerald's humor or blaring satirical metaphors. Over all, a shallow, ready-made "insta-Oscar" movie in a box.

Dec 29 - 10:05 PM

Catalyst8

Linda Ingmanson

I totally agree! I also thought of Gump after sitting through three tedious hours of Ben Buttons. Even Brad Pitt looked and sounded bored throughout. The characters were unsympathetic, from the sadly one-dimensional Benjamin to his horny dancer girlfried who seemed to have one speed: fast forward to bed. More depth and better dialogue would have saved what was an excellent concept. But instead, we had one cliche after another and a tired and obvious message (appreciate life! Duhhh!). I'm getting really sick of Hollywood cheaping out on ideas and playing it safe and stupid instead of taking good concepts in new directions. Oh well - three hours of my life gone! Can we turn back the clock on that?

Dec 30 - 08:33 AM

purelement

Derek Mowrey

Ann describes her thoughts while watching the film with all the zeal of a spoiled child unwrapping toys at Christmas, and throwing the gift out with the paper.

Dec 30 - 10:18 PM

Marc D.

Marc Denechaud

Ms. Hornaday, you are a moron.

Jan 23 - 07:26 AM

Ausautas V.

Ausautas V.

I thought of Gump too. Maybe because it was on TV the other day, but I didn't think of Jaws at all.

Dec 31 - 05:31 AM

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