I always had a soft spot for biopics, specially female-driven ones, as I find them fascinating to watch. From "Funny Girl" to "La Vie en Rose", "Elizabeth" to "Silkwood" or "Monster", there's something about women character's studies that trigger some indescribable absorption. Even when these films aren't that acclaimed by critics and general audiences being accused of relying too much on a great performance, I tend to disagree. One of my top 30 films of all time is "The Iron Lady" which combined the history of a figure I didn't know much about with the most unblemished performance of this century so far and, by proximity, a riveting entrance to a person's mind. Now, I feel that Jackie is being generally underrated, it isn't getting the attention it deserves. When it comes to the Oscars, besides the totally deserved noms for Costume Design, Actress and Original Score, I believe it should have been nominated for Production Design and Best Picture (Hidden Figures and Lion have nothing on it). Though the editing is flawed and it needs more polishing in the transitions between the 3 acts, Jackie is a character piece that seizes the best of an iconic personality. It's structure is captivating, the script is memorable and insightful (from the guy who wrote Allegiant and The Maze Runner???) and, specially the score is unimpaired, coming 3rd only to Moonlight and La La Land. And, of course we've got to talk about the elephant in the room: yes, the movie's primal anchor is Portman's performance. That woman is unreal. She isn't close to walking the thin line between impersonation and performance. She becomes Jackie in all her might and this is rarely achieved in movie history. We filmmakers play sometimes too freely with someone's famous persona but this is absolute on target, honoring Jackie as the heroine. Like "The Queen", the movie isn't about a tragic accident, it's about how someone reacts to it, while allowing us to fully understand where they come from. As we follow Jackie, alternating between stock and produced footage, we feel the emotional ride, we feel Jackie's pain, we sympathize with her and that makes it deeply moving (I cried once, I admit). Furthermore, this movie's geniality comes fractionally from the social context it's insert in. It has something pointful to say about our perception of public figures, as this movie manages to be a more realistic insight to Jackie than we ever got, because, as she says "The characters we read on the page end up being more real than the men who stand beside us". Camelot is exquisitely used to get this point across, as it serves as the perfect allegory for the construction of a legacy and the deconstruction of a person's emotional affairs. It's also relevant because, under President Trump, it's a great example of a foreign director having a try in Hollywood. We need this to happen more frequently: foreign directors bringing their take to an all American situation. That way we don't run the risk of being too patriotic (which us often felt in biopics of great American figures). Larraín doesn't have a shot of the American flag flapping in the wind, he keeps the focus on something even more American: Jackie O. Combining Hollywood production with offshore sensibilities is in the core of what always made cinema great. Lang, Murnau, Antonioni, Truffaut were all allowed to come to America to make their mark so we should always let borders open for the flow of foreign influences to, if anything else, have cool sounding names like Taika Waititi. Returning to the movie, Jackie is one of the best movies of the year and it affected me very deeply. It's a pyschodrama of eloquent proportions, one that does that rare job of briefly substituting the person with the actor.
Director Larrain is splendidly assisted in this haunting autopsy by two other story-tellers. Twenty-nine year old Mica Levi weaves brooding voluptuous magic with orchestral notes, composed inseparably into the movie's fibre. Larrain does not hesitate to dial up her music - the very first frames of Jackie walking in twilight, breathe in broad haunting strokes of decrescendo cello. Ms.Levi harvests that formidable instrument with key contributions of flute, powerfully, languidly and judiciously, with endlessly inventive variations. Days of Heaven", "I am Love" and now this film open another vital chapter of the textbook on how to use orchestra in film.
Frame after frame is simply beautiful to watch, an earth-bound heaven in pastel, with immaculately composed canvases by cinematographer Stephane Fontaine (cf. similar soft-tone beauty in his 'Elle' the same year). The White House interiors are ravishingly beautiful, covered smoothly in flowing takes as Jackie walks through it, the glowing expanses of white tastefully accentuated by elegant classical furniture. Exterior shots of the Port Hyannis mansion are exquisite in showing Massachussets countryside in autumn tranquility, and so also the the postcard-worthy vistas of trees and lake as Jackie confides in a priest.
Portman is indistinguishable from the persona she essays, a magnificent internalization that acting dreams are made of. Just like the real-life Jacqueline Kennedy, she's a bit stiff and formal while speaking publicly, and more direct and natural in private. Her hair is styled up into a bouffant, her wardrobe tres fashionable, the voice drawn out in a Southern affected drawl, and Portman's natural beauty matches the latter's prettiness. Jacqueline Kennedy had emerged as the most glamorous and adored First Lady the Americans ever had, a fashion icon even in the campaign days when her presence made her husband's popularity doubly soar, going on to splendidly redecorate the White House, and hosting glittering art events not witnessed before. But President John F Kennedy was a promiscuous man and his wife would have had to live with this ritual humiliation. When he died, how much of her grief was due to the loss of a beloved husband and what part due to the abrupt shortening of her legacy as an adored queen ? We see that Jacqueline is genuinely devastated, floating in and out of a fugue state even as she relentlessly battles to keep up appearances. It is in her interview with the journalist that we sense what truly was going in her mind. More @ Upnworld
Jackie nos ofrece un increíble trabajo artístico; la dirección de fotografía es una de las más impecables del 2016, conectando directamente al espectador con la historia. En cuanto a la mezcla de sonido, por momentos no encuadra directamente con el desarrollo de la película, a pesar de tener a una buena banda sonora. La actuación de Natalie Portman es fenomenal.