CLOSER [2004] movie review

June 15, 2013 · Print This Article

Somehow I feel like I have previously seen CLOSER [2004] as certain scenes did seem to be very faintly familiar, or maybe that is just how the movie plays out and affects the viewer. Natalie Portman long has been a favorite so just her presence alone could make the movie seem familiar. Either way, I knew I was taking a risk by watching this movie, that it could be nothing but malice and a downer. It would have been, if not for Portman’s character staying likable throughout.

The actor list in the credits is one of the shortest I have ever seen for a movie that actually takes place in many different locations, both indoors and out. Still, other than the four principles, I think there were only like two other credited extremely minor speaking roles.

The opening to CLOSER is rather surreal, with long shots showing only a walking Jude Law and Portman in focus among the crowd. They are walking toward each other and make and maintain eye contact, so much so Portman gets hit by a car as she walks right into the street, though she is American and newly in London and cars driving on the other side of the road, as I know from personal experience, does take time to get used to.

The movie jumps in time very quickly with hard edits, so much so the first time it happened I had to remind to make sure I did not miss any “1 year later” title or something. This is when we meet the next two main characters played by Julia Roberts (why I have no idea) and Clive Owen. Roberts is a photographer, and either she has real skills or someone at least taught her how to hold a camera for the part. Law goes to get his headshot made for a book he wrote based on Portman’s life! He tries to kiss Roberts, which seems crazy.

Even crazier, Law chats online impersonating a woman setting up Owens to meet him in an aquarium, where he actually meets Roberts.

The rest of the movie is a rather perverse stream of affairs between these two couples not ending up anywhere I thought it would. There are even a few surprise twists to add a bit to the ending to keep it from being too much of a downer.

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