Youth Without Youth Reviews
But then it got confusing. And I got bored. Quickly.
This got critically drubbed and made very little money (fortunately it was a low-budget effort), and I feel bad for Coppola because of that. It is a fantastic movie to look at, has actors of presence in Tim Roth and Alexandra Maria Lara, and offers up numerous good ideas by virtue of its source. Unfortunately, those stars are lost in the script they have to wade through, and that beautiful imagery just seems to swirl together without anything distinctive going on in it.
This definitely could have been better.
The story of a man whose life (present and future) is changed by a sudden and striking event, leaves more questions than answers--but then again, film is supposed to that. There are soooo many themes running throughout this film (life, death, war, dream-states, time-travel, metaphoric transgression and the duality of man with his conscience--among others.)
This film is truly a genre-bending romp and follows no preordained Hollywood formula (from its relatively unknown cast to its allegorical cinematography and symbolic art direction) the movie reveals one riddle after another and feeds us only scraps of truth (without truth) and fragments of answers (without answers.)
I heard a woman after our screening complain that Coppola went from The Godfather--to this! The movie was obviously not meant for her. This movie is more along the lines of a Lynch, Aronofsky, or a Fellini film--highly cerebral and requiring a great amount from the audience.
Though the slow pace and confusing storylines may make the movie seem like it's robbed some of you of your own youth, give this a chance if you like to be challenged at the megaplex. Although, this movie--you'll be lucky to find playing anywhere at all.
If you're interested in seeing the film, get to the theater as quickly as possible because this movie is likely to be a complete failure at the box office and will not play very long--if at all.
That being said, I loved the film for myself. I don't know how much I could recommend it to others, but selfishly, the movie was made for someone like me. I like to think and re-think meaning and purpose of a film instead of simply sitting in a theater waiting to be "entertained." I like to learn and knowledge is something that this film provides in heaps and loads.
There is an abundance of intellectual wealth that somoene could gain from experiencing this film. Even though I couldn't recommend the film itself (despite my enjoyment of it) I am always eager to recommend a new, unique and challenging experience for moviegoers like myself. If the proverbial shoe fits...
[font=Century Gothic]Written, directed and produced by Francis Ford Coppola, "Youth without Youth" is about mortality as viewed through the eyes of a man who has been frustrated by his inability to discover the origin of language and complete his life's work. At the same time, this scientist is confronted by clear signs of the supernatural. Original and as full of ideas as the movie is, it is ironic that the movie is as frustrating as Dominic's quest for knowledge. Perhaps it is the combination of superheroes and the intellectual but there is nothing to say that these two are mutually exclusive.[/font]
"Youth Without Youth" is based on the novella of the same name by Romanian author Mircea Eliade and it was the first film that Coppola had directed in ten years since 1997's The Rainmaker. In this film you'll find a very personal approach to a barely known novella by Mircea Eliade, but also homage to Romanian culture and civilization. People who read the novella found it difficult and "anti-cinematic"... it's some kind of a meditation on time and the relation between human memory and identity. The major theme of the film is "la vita est sueno" (life is dream) but Coppola said that he made the film as a meditation on time and on consciousness, which he considers a "changing tapestry of illusion," admitting that the film may also be appreciated as a beautiful love story, or as a mystery.
I purchased this DVD and was ready to enjoy the experience which blurs dreams and everyday life and suggests that through visual and narrative experimentation the main character has begun the search for new ways of making meaning, new holy places for him and for us... but the problem in enjoying that search process was in the bad sound recording - I'll say the worst in the 21st century! Mumbling of the complicated philosophical theories is not something I prefer when having trouble with the full story!
Disappointing work from one of my favourite directors... two hours and six minutes long!
Quite hard to comprehend, and it was very very confusing at times.
Not too sure if I even understand it now..
Good watch in all, very interesting..
But weird. Very complicated as well.
It was okay but very hard to watch.
Several moments feel like they were deliberately wooden. A character falls to the ground, and it's as if she is a mechanical toy that just goes stiff and topples over. Dialogue sounds like it comes from a David Mamet play. Every time philosophizing is done, the whole film screeches to a halt as "deep points" are made, and then the film continues as if nothing has happened. It didn't bring me to a greater awareness of the movie, however, as it could have done - instead, it made the entire thing feel amateurish, done by a student who wants to make a "great film" in the style of the masters, and just ends up pushing together a lot of moments that could make a movie meaningful, and then releasing it, convinced it's going to go down in history as utter brilliance. Sorry, Francis. It doesn't look like anyone, including me, thinks this is the next Godfather.