The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
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All Critics (48)
| Top Critics (14)
| Fresh (36)
| Rotten (12)
Bertolucci and co-writer Clare Peploe seem intent on deconstructing the story's interesting elements at every turn, substituting woolliness for clarity, atmospherics for real emotion and an often condescending, armchair-liberal naivete for real political
It's a film about the limits of art, about civilization at this moment of flux, and about a gentle connection between a man and a woman.
This is a deeply engrossing, often exquisite film by someone who knows visuals. It's sensory, sensual, handmade.
What an unexpected gift.
Given Bertolucci's impish leanings, the self-referential sequences may merely be gags. If so, they're among a half-dozen others that backfire.
A film that combines a stunning sensuality with a rigorous economy.
Made for Italian TV, this modestly scaled, intimate drama about the relationship between a British musician and his African housekeeper is well acted by Thandie Newton and David Thewlis.
Maddening on many fronts and strangely wordless, Bernardo Bertolucci's purported love story breaks no new ground.
Bertolucci conjures magic once again.
Visually creative filmmaking.
One of the most accessible films to come from Bertolucci and shows the filmmakers deep understanding of his craft.
Despite a vividly expressive performance by Newton, the lack of urgency equates to a lack of intimacy.
Besieged was an useless combination of political and romantic drama, wandering back and forth between the two leads that never really had reached each other. The movie had an interesting beginning with the imprisonment of Shandurai's husband, but the story gradually fell apart after that. There was no emotional force driving the events in the movie and there was never any satisfying realization of Shandurai's sadness. It was fine performance by Thandie Newton in the lead, but Bertolucci's lack to balance out the two halves of the story, stopped the characters from reaching their full potential, and so we could not seen a fascinating drama. Too bad.
A graceful, visually exquisite piece that (on a second watch) works for me despite its flaws. The languid nature of the narrative is obviously a detractor as far as audience connection goes, but it works to establish an enigmatic presence for both of the main characters. The story has a poetic sensibility that allows us to discard some of our expectations as to what the movie is going to deliver. David Thewlis is brilliant, as always, and Thandie Newton is very strong too. That's saying a lot, since the actors have very little dialogue to establish their performances with. Watch it once, think about it, and then watch it again.
Found the pacing to be a bit too languid.
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