Delirious - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Delirious Reviews

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maxthesax
Super Reviewer
½ May 14, 2011
I always jump at the chance to watch Steve Buscemi work, and here he is at his most acerbic self, playing a paparazzi with delusions of grandeur opposite Michael Pitt who does a creditable job as Toby, the homeless young man that Buscemi takes in (and takes advantage of).

The story ostensibly is about their relationship - that of a loser who gets a chance to play Svengali to a naive yet grounded young man who had come to New York hoping to find an acting gig. While this story is interesting what makes the film compelling is that it really gets inside the media/stardom riff. Buscemi's character "Les" (hint hint) points out that those that take the picture are just as important as the stars themselves, because without the pictures there'd be no magazines and without the magazines there'd be very little to keep the stars in the spotlight.

The film further exposes the stardom hierarchy (as perceived by the stars themselves). There's A list and B lists galore, and even an "all access" press pass has levels of true access. It's this farcical nature and twisted reality that Les rails against (in Buscemi's own brash, yet wounded soul way); although his tough exterior hiding a pitiful guy with low esteem riff does get a bit tired by the end of the film. He keeps telling Pitt that the stars are no different from you and me, but yet gets completely tongue tied when he gets the chance to meet Elvis Costello. Yep, Les is a sad loser, one of those who exist on the fringe of society - wanting to be noticed, but without the charm and charisma to make it happen. Even his small victories seem hollow as his parents totally dismiss the fact that one of his pictures got a quarter page spread in one of the trash weeklies.

The film also features Alison Lohman doing a nice turn as a coddled Britneyesque music star that the story of Toby and Les revolves around. The film pokes fun at this type of character by showing a compellingly bad music video of her latest "hit", and then later as she and Costello discuss doing a musical about the life of Brittney Spears - life imitating art, imitating crap. Gotta love it!

Overall I felt that the film could have been tighter. There were scenes that went on too long as if searching for some magical riff that never occurred, and at times the pacing dragged, but overall, while stylized, it did give an intriguing look into the star machine while also offering solid performances by the two leads.
cosmo313
Super Reviewer
February 2, 2011
This might be a variation on the rags to riches story, but it is also a charming, touching, and insightful look at the world of celebrity, mostly from the perspective of a photogrpaher.

He prefers the term "licensed professional", but it is obvious that Les Galantine (Buscemi) is just an obsessive compulsive and desperate member of the oft-loathed paparazzi. One day he crosses paths with an odd homeless actor named Toby (Pitt) who is genuine, maybe a little off, and aimless. Les takes Toby under his wing, providing him with food and shelter, and a job as his assistant.

Along the way, Toby gets a break, and his friendship with Les goes downhill. I thought I knew where this film was headed, but then became surprised when it started to take a dark turn. I was even more surprised when the ending took where I thought it was going and suddenly turned the other way. Good job, DiCillo. I salute you.

Buscemi and Pitt are amazing, and the support cast, including Kevin Corrigan, Gina Gerson, and Alison Lohman are likewise fantastic. This has indie film plastered all over it, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It's insightful and engaging without being pretentious, and it doesn't feel forced or fake like a Hollywood version might.

Give this one a shot. It's pretty good, and kind of puts things into perspective as far as celebrity photographers go. I'm not saying I totally respect those people now, but it makes me not hate them as much.
Super Reviewer
½ October 14, 2010
I really enjoyed this movie. Hollywood has always fascinated me. Watching both sides of the celebrity vs. paparazzi issue was quite interesting. Good acting. Good storyline. Very enjoyable, in my opinion.
YodaMasterJedi
Super Reviewer
May 7, 2009
Calling all Steve Buscemi fans! I started watching this movie on cable quite by accident. In the opening scene I thought I recognized a friend of mine in a minor role and while waiting for him to reappear and see if it was in fact him I found myself captivated with this brilliant little indie until the end. Steve Buscemi is one of the best, and most interesting, American actors today. (Check him out in his early role as Nick in "Parting Glances" from 1985.) He elevates the level of every movie he does. Although, this film doesn't need any help from him. It's good. REALLY good. It is a character study. And as with most character studies the characters studied are somewhat unpleasant and maybe not very sympathetic. But in this movie they are well worth taking a closer look at.

Les Galantine (Steve Buscemi) is the dregs of the paparazzi. He lives in a crap hole apartment in a bad neighborhood and the only thing worse than the neighborhood he lives in is the inside of his apartment. He has horrible parents whom he still visits and has attachments to. And when we see the three of them together it is very sad. A homeless guy named Toby (Michael Pitt) weasels his way into Les's life, and his crap hole apartment, and is eventually promoted from non-rent-paying roommate who sleeps in the closet to paparazzi's assistant. Had enough yet? There's more. Wait until K'Harma Leeds, pop diva, shows up with her entourage. At one point we see her sitting before a Magnus Chord Organ, (like the one I got for Christmas in 1974), composing her next hit. When we later see her perform it at a music awards show we realize what a joke it was that she agonized over whether to use the word "searching" or "looking" because her ONLY talent is that she lip syncs and dances like a stripper, i.e. a pop diva.

The relationship between Les Galantine and Toby is the centerpiece of the story. Les is needy and repulsive all at the same time. He perspires desperation and fear of abandonment. Toby, goes with the flow. And the flow eventually takes him from homeless guy, to pop diva hanger oner, to star of his own really really bad TV show called "Toby" where he plays a homeless serial killer, named Toby. And just a quick reminder here, his name in real life is Toby. This show is so bad they couldn't even be bothered to imagine a different name for the main character so they just used the name of it's "star". His rise to stardom, his romantic intrigues, and his "go with the flow" style of living, are all expertly written as commentary on the vapid lives and personalities of people who are famous for being famous. The writing and directing, by Tom Dicillo, is witty, poignant, and surgical in it's precision. There is not a wasted word or moment anywhere.

Steve Buscemi is great in everything he does. He is brilliant in "Delirious" . Michael Pitt plays Toby with a warmth and sympathy that makes the process of getting a closer look at those around him tolerable. Honestly, I don't think I'm in the "Michael Pitt demographic", and I've never really gotten him as an actor, until this film. He expertly ties all the disparate elements of these characters, Les Galantine, the talentless pop diva (Allison Lohman), the casting agent (Gina Gershon) and their stories, together in a very compelling performance. I have way big respect for him now...

It is not explicitly spelled out but I would like to go on record here to say that I think Les Galantine is gay and in love with Toby. And although that's not central to the story line it does inform us, somewhat, about this sad injured creature. Steve Buscemi, as Les Galantine, is hard to watch and hard to pull away from from beginning to end. That's talent. Equal credit has to go to the writer/director Tom Dicillo. The story, sometimes mocking, sometimes tender, is written and executed perfectly. The pace is perfect. When it's done you don't even know where the time went. If you like well made, interesting movies, with gobs of talent from beginning to end, watch this one. The ending will surprise you, and the journey is well worth it no matter what. By the way, my friend was not in this movie, and the character I thought he was playing never showed up again...
Super Reviewer
October 27, 2007
Really enjoyed this movie, it did get a little long towards the end which is why I only rated it four stars, but it was mostly a moving, funny at times film, great acting and you really did care about the characters. It also had a bit of a twist to the end, definitely worth watching.
Super Reviewer
January 31, 2007
A soap writer is trapped in his own creation. Funny stuff. John Candy on top of his game.
Harlequin68
Super Reviewer
½ May 1, 2009
[font=Century Gothic]In "Delirious," Toby(Michael Pitt) moved to New York City in the hopes of becoming a star but these dreams faded and now he is forced to sleep on the streets and subway. One day, he stumbles across a pack of paparazzi on a stake out at a chic restaurant to get a photograph of K'Harma(Alison Lohman), a pop star. Even though he accidentally allows her to escape, he still makes the acquaintance of Les(Steve Buscemi), one of the photographers, and persuades him to become an unpaid assistant and maid in return for room and board. Toby's stock rises even further when he proves to be the key to getting a candid photograph of Chuck Sirloin(Jack Gwaltney).[/font]

[font=Century Gothic]"Delirious" is an uneven and uninspired movie that can easily be reduced to sons seeking the approval of their fathers. As a satire of celebrity culture, it fails by taking shots at easy targets like underdressed pop divas and paparazzi who are occasionally grouped in with cockroaches on the evolutionary ladder.(And on behalf of everybody of my generation, I would like to apologize for MTV.) While quite possibly bottom feeders, I still think it is wrong to scapegoat them. That is because the blame for celebrity culture is more complex than that. And a movie with a better supporting cast and atmosphere would have a better chance to accomplish an incisive satire.[/font]
SC007
Super Reviewer
January 18, 2009
This was a decent Tom DiCillo film. It's not one of his best, but definitely entertaining. Steve Buscemi is really great as the photographer in the film. Gina Gershon and Callie Thorne (of Rescue Me) were also good in supporting roles. Michael Pitt was ok, but I think another actor in that role could have brought out much more than what Pitt did. I also think that Alison Lohman was miscast as the singer. I loved the grabbing of the gift bags at the award show scene. I have done that myself at any award show I have attended.
Super Reviewer
½ June 18, 2008
This movie has such a big heart and is so genuinely touching that I was more than willing to look past its little flaws. Filled with irony and wit, it's a smart rags-to-riches story about friendship and the many facets of people's positions in life. Steve Buscemi is excellent, and Michael Pitt is brilliant in a role that seems like it could have been written specifically for him. One of my favorite films of 2007.
Super Reviewer
½ November 2, 2007
Though more contrived than convincing, reeks of hard-earned insight, experience.
Super Reviewer
½ July 28, 2008
Michael Pitt is actually not creepy in this. I liked it. Very original and pretty sweet.
½ June 14, 2012
this is a really good movie. for some reason i just found it really great. at parts i just seemed to lose track a litte bit of what was happening (but then regained what was) this was a really well made movie with a great ending.
the ending was full of emotion and it was great to see him so happy, i had begun to hate the homeless man for being selfish and unforgiving. but at the end i truly think he made up for it
½ April 7, 2012
I'm in love with Michael Pitt. Bunch of unexpected stuff in this movie, and it was real cute. I loved it!
½ September 15, 2010
Touching, funny, and bromantic, I love this movie.

It's about a good looking homeless guy played by Michael Pitt who one day comes across a group of paparazzi's who want to get pictures of this famous singer K'Harma Leeds. The homeless guy interferes and ends up befriending one of the paparazzi's played by the fastest swaring actor in the world Steve Buscemi who acts the same as he does in every other movie that he's in. Steve makes Michael Pitt his assistant in the paparazzi business because he also really wants to become an actor and he thinks that this might be a good start. Following Steve around everywhere taking pictures of people eventually leads to Michael and K'Harma meeting up again and eventually become a couple. Them becoming a couple then leads to both Michael and Steve getting invited to a party filled with a bunch of famous celebrities. Steve can't control the erg to take pictures of celebrities however so they both end up getting get kicked out. Stuff similar to this happens later in the film and Michael Pitt gets so pissed off at him that he eventually just leaves him and runs off to become an actor, a successful one. Steve eventually gets extremely jealous at what a big celebrity he's become and comes up with a plan to kill him as he's walking down the red carpet. But then just as he's about to pull the trigger something happens in that scene that touches me in a way that just thinking about it warms my heart every time.

What holds this whole movie together are the excellent performances, terrific casting, and sharp writing which is why it's one of the best movies of 2006, I think so anyway.
August 9, 2010
I love this film.
Buscemi's best film ever imo.

It has romance, lies, action and great dialogue.

Homeless loser gets a job with a low life paparazzi, sleeping his run down flat in a closet.
Meets a superstar rock babe and the rest is a launch into the drama of uber elite...don't forget about Buscemi...the psychotic funny, neurotic photog.
½ July 17, 2010
Michael Pitt and Steve Buscemi put in great performances, and the script, more of a series of vignettes than a straight-ahead story, is pretty good as well. Also of note is Alison Lohman, who has been great in the handful of her films I've had the opportunity to see.
November 21, 2009
An insightful and intimate look into the lives of both the rich and the poor, the famous and the nobodies. Buscemi and Pitt are excellent together, and the end really pays off. Lohman is fine as a pretty pop star, although she could have used more. The film struggles to maintain it's authenticity with the satirical edge it takes on celebrity and it's creation, but it's never dull. Although Buscemi's character turns unnecessarily dark at one point, which nearly brings the film to a dead stop, Delirious turns out to be a compelling and biting flick. Think Lost In Translation, with Paparazzi.
½ May 27, 2010
Awesome! It was a big surprise to me. I wonder why this movie did not become too famous. It has a great acting by most part of the cast, especially from Steve Buscemi and Michael Pitt. Great acting also by Gina Gershon, who has several roles in the story. The movie has a little bit of everything. Drama, comedy, romance...
½ February 22, 2010
Vicious, kind, skeptical, wonderful, hilarious....Tom DiCillio's NY fairy tale/buddy comedy/papparazzi frolic is rich with contradictory actions and feelings. It's a biting film, well-aware of the sincerity and deceitfulness of its animalistic characters (a ratlike Steve Buscemi, a shaggy dog Michael Pitt). Sad yet hopeful.
½ April 16, 2009
This movie totally kicks ass! Michael Pitt is amazing, and him and Steve Buscemi work great together!
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