Mexican filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu makes his first English-language feature with the downbeat drama 21 Grams. Set in an unnamed U.S. urban center, the film uses a nonlinear structure to piece together the intertwined lives of three very different people. Paul (Sean Penn) is a math teacher with a heart problem and a troubled marriage to British wife Mary (Charlotte Gainsbourg). Christine (Naomi Watts) is a former drug addict who lives with her husband, Michael (Danny Huston), and her daughters. Jack (Benicio del Toro) is a born-again Christian with a wife (Melissa Leo) who has stood by him since his days as a criminal. Following a tragic accident, the three main characters are thrown into each other's lives. 21 Grams was shown in competition at the 2003 Venice International Film Festival. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi
Rent movies and games by mail without a monthly subscription and pay only for the movies and games you want. Blockbuster By Mail Subscribers can use it to get even more rentals each month. You'll have 7 days to watch, then return in the prepaid mailer.
No subscription required. Usually ships in 24 hours.
Blockbuster Instant Video
Watch thousands of movies instantly on your TV, tablet, mobile phone or computer with no monthly subscription.
You pay only for what you watch.
Far too often people confuse "angst" with "literature". Melodrama does not create meaning on its own. While the story is not completely without redemption--there's a kernel of something in it--far too much of the energy of the film is spent trying to show us over and over how depressed the characters are instead of building purpose.
In addition, this film is disjointed for no conceivable reason. In Memento, Irreversible or other films that used a non-linear storyline, the technique was used purposefully to allow the viewer to gain a different perception of a character that would be later altered when the "true" events unfolded. This film does no such thing. It's confusing for confusing sake... my best guess is that it allows what should have been a 20 minute short to be dragged out to a grueling two hours.
Inarritu showed more focus in this movie compared to his later movie Babel. But he again needlessly presents it in a nonlinear fashion, aimlessly switching between the storylines, to make the overall story seem more interesting and complicated than it really is. It actually detracts from the movie overall since it greatly diminishes the climax, and sometimes it's just downright distracting. However, Inarritu does appear to be able to get good performances out of his actors, with the exception of Sean Penn. But he's not a good actor to begin with anyway.