Excerpt: Ma il lavoro di Inarritu è sincero e riuscito, un piccolo gioiello di scrittura, di regia e recitazione: forse le singole parti si impongono sul risulltato complessivo, come spesso è successo in passato per i film del regista messicano.
Excerpt: Alejandro González Iñárritu y su equipo proponen una tremebunda maratón técnica coronada por un elenco volcado en dar vida a los protagonistas de esta fábula sobre la fama, la identidad, la percepción propia y ajena. Un trabajo fundamental que perdurará en el tiempo.
Excerpt: “Birdman” is just a character piece with a lot of set dressing and an out-of-the-box approach. There’s a lot of in-jokes for movie buffs and drama folks, which adds to its value. It may not be what you expect, but there are some laughs to be had and a strong sense of character led by Keaton.
Excerpt: [Cinematographer Emmanuel] Lubezki makes ample use of mirrors to create ad hoc reverse shots, but for the most part the emphasis is on allowing the roaming camera to work with the actors to fill in the gaps where more traditional compositions would have been used. The camerawork is akin to the jazz drumming that makes up most of the soundtrack; you need tremendous skill and precision to appear that spontaneous and improvisational.
Excerpt: Despite Keaton’s real life decision to rise above the expectations connected to stardom, his investment of autobiographical details into his performance is an acknowledgement that artists at any level cannot easily ignore criticism when they are so tied into their vehicle for expression.
Excerpt: Iñárritu captures the teeming, electric sense of the location in a way that few recent films have managed, recalling classic films whose grungy-glamorous portraits of urban gods captured both the city’s boiling, stygian ferocity and vigour, a crucible of possibility.
Excerpt: The proceedings have an immediacy that is exhilarating. Iñárritu directs his cast like a symphonic piece, each one carefully entering and exiting the scene at various parts of the 119 minute movement.
Excerpt: Birdman’s script is tight and intricate, the actors bringing it to life and on the top of their game, and the result is one of the best movies of the year. My biggest problem is firmly declaring whether Birdman is very good or great.
Excerpt: Each year, only a handful of films really evoke a “wow” or blow one away. There is a frisson in seeing a motion picture so original, unclassifiable and rule-breaking that it invigorates. For 2014, meet “Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).”
Excerpt: Attempting to review Birdman, the new film from Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, is somewhat trepidatious, not least because midway through the film, troubled protagonist Riggan Thompson launches into a bile-spewing tirade against just such criticism. In his case it is New York Times theatre critic Tabitha Dickinson, whose reviews can make or break a play in just 500 words, but the attitude and the sentiment most certainly spreads to cinema critics too. One of the many great ironies in the film, however, is just how much these artists pander to their critics, are beholden to their audiences and scrap in the gutter with each other in search of those precious few moments in the spotlight, and column inches on the front page.
Excerpt: In less capable hands, this could have degenerated into a soulless meta exercise. But ‘Birdman’ pulls off its self-reflexive magic trick and manages to be a funny, complex, if imperfect, meditation on art and humanity’s pursuit of meaning.
Excerpt: It’s missing the subtlety that would really make it soar: the thematically underbelly of it all is almost relentlessly pounded into us, and each of these wonderful parts feels aggressively over-the-top when combined into an ungainly whole.
Excerpt: For about 80 or 90 minutes, Birdman is good, heady fun with a virtuoso filmmaking style and dynamite performances. Then for the last half hour, it’s a lot of squelchy philosophy and narrative flailing as its various pieces malfunction and fall by the wayside.
Excerpt: There is virtually no way that Keaton could brush off comparisons between his own career and that of the character that he plays in Birdman, a once great box office star of a hit superhero franchise who walked away from the series at its height but never really found that level of success again.
Excerpt: Birdman’ is Hollywood insiders navel-gazing, hang-wringing, and soul-searching about how to be taken seriously as artists, sure. But it’s also the best Hollywood has to offer: it’s unpredictable, bold, and unapologetic, manned by a completely committed cast and crew working at their collective peaks.
Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
Excerpt: A savage satire of Hollywood celebrity gone to seed…delivered with an irresistible degree of cinematic panache.
David Upton @ So So Gay
Excerpt: Its scattered energies seem less the product of a stimulating theatrical experience than a lack of coherence and an absent willingness to think these plot lines through.