The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
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Amanda Seyfried and Peter Sarsgaard do their best with the material, but Lovelace lacks enough depth and conviction to truly do its fascinating subject justice.
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Seyfried, with her huge features crowding her small face, looks like Alice in a very strange Wonderland. But whatever possibilities she may have as an actress are eradicated by the filmmakers ...
Lovelace may be a little contrived and unoriginal as drama, but it's a useful exercise in de-sentimentalisation.
Linda's feelings are rarely revealed: that's left to the gloomy final act, which feels more like a guilt-inducing postscript than a genuine reveal.
"Lovelace" becomes too distracted by industry politics and the cultural context of the film's release to provide more than a snapshot of her life either before or after she stepped in front of a camera.
Unfortunately, most of Lovelace is more generic and familiar, right down to the too-neat happy ending.
This drama from codirectors Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman is so respectful of 70s porn sensation Linda Lovelace that instead of humanizing the Deep Throat star, it reduces her to one dimension: victim.
Lovelace is structurally sound, telling the popular Hollywood version of events before re-tracing some of its steps and revealing a glimpse of the violence that went on behind the scenes.
Seyfried is remarkable as Linda, showing the woman's duality of hope and fear, acquiescence and anguish, in sequences that require a multitude of conflicting emotions.
What is fascinating about the film is the way the format, showing us the same events twice and from two different perspectives, helps to tell the story: not that porn is evil, but that porn is a lie.
Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman... quickly show their true colours, more concerned with aesthetics and narrative gimmickry - provided by writer Andy Bellin - than the tragic tale itself.
Amanda Seyfried earns her acting stripes here, her brave no holds barred performance completely sheds her Les Miz and Mamma Mia good girl image.
It is unpretentious and moving, and Seyfried is great.
Lackluster outing with a Jerry Springer vibe as the nice girl next door marries a pervy creep who essentially pimps her out, not missing a chance to twirl his moustaches nefariously. These caricatures limit the feature and render the ending a foregone conclusion disappointingly.
I did not know that Lovelace's story, especially her involvement with the classic porn film Deep Throat, was such a tragic story of naivety and abuse. Seyfriend entirely disappears behind her wig and make up here, giving a pretty damn convincing performance. The writing and direction could have been a little more stringent, though, making it a somewhat uneven movie. People hoping for big sex scenes will not get much out of it either.
The most interesting thing in this solid biopic is how it shows us one side of Linda Lovelace's life and then subverts it to reveal the real dark truth behind all that we are witnessing, becoming a touching drama about a terribly unlucky woman caught in a very sad life.
Linda Lovelace's special talent propels her to stardom as she hobnobs with high culture, but her abusive husband casts a pall on the seventies era fun.
This film is structured oddly. During the first hour or so, it delights in all the sex, fashion, sex, riches, and sex, and while it isn't nearly as seductive as Boogie Nights or as a wild as The Wolf of Wall Street, Amanda Seyfried's doe eyes certainly make it attractive. The second hour is dedicated to making us feel guilty about having fun. As a result the film becomes a reproach of the porn industry. This is fine, but the structure of the film seems aggressive and didactic.
Peter Sarsgaard is actually bad. It's shocking, but his Ike Turner impression is cliched and without depth. Amanda Seyfried is perfect for Lovelace, but the film doesn't give her much to play with. She is allowed to be sexy, and she is; she is allowed to be a victim, and she is; she is allowed to be triumphant, and she is. But the beats between these transitions aren't fully explored.
Overall, this film had a lot of potential, but it doesn't live up to it.
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