Haggis lets us get way ahead of the characters and the figure out what the
title of this writerly tale — Third Person — has to do with the sometimes
illogical connections between stories. That’s not a problem. Dragging, dragging
dragging the tales out after he reaches a logical climax and something close to
a resolution with each is not.
It's an amazingly crafted story revolving around the theme of trust. I am baffled by all the negative reviews. It is without a doubt one of the most well-written films I've seen in the last few years, if not the best.
Yes, it is as long as a six course dinner, but what a feast. The subject matter is interesting--the disasters that happen to children when they are loved too much, not enough, or when they can't compete with the complications of their parents' lives. The cinematography is superb. The actors outdo themselves. Liam Neeson and Adrien Brody are esteemed, but this is their best work. Olivia Wilde is a revelation in a very difficult role. Mila Kunis and James Franco prove more than cute, off beat personalities. The director, Paul Haggis, loves telling multiple stories that combine sometimes in terms of story, sometimes only through implication. If this is "playing God", let him play on--he has the cards.
I don't like this movie. I don't like how it walks, talks, struts and sells itself. I find it contrived, tortured, humorless, infuriating and interminable. And yet if you care anything about film and the creative drive that still exists in the people who make them, then Third Person needs to be seen.
Third Person is an audacious failure, one that even its starry cast can't save. With a trite script, and an even more glib thematic undercurrent, Third Person is nothing short of an outright embarrassment.
Even though with a strong and elegant cast for "Third person," the script is convoluted, and Haggis tries to focus on three scripts to make it into a film. Liam Neeson takes a break from the action movies and does a romance movie? in this movie he is a alcoholic selfish writer, who **** at love, so he is in paris trying write his novel. Olivia Wilde loves Nesson's character, but they don't know it yet. Adrien Brody tries to help Monika (Moran Atias), get her money back from the con's. Mila Kunis has a rough past, so she wants custody of her son from James Franco's character; so they get are getting divorce. The script gets way off, a lot. Grade B+
The "interconnected stories" trick worked well for director and screenwriter Paul Haggis when he won two Oscars for Crash (2004). I'm in the minority who enjoyed that film, and Haggis tried to do something similar in Third Person, but this time, I found the movie boring and pretentious, despite the solid performances. Third Person is told with a frustrating slowness, gradually losing the energy of the three stories. Nevertheless, as I previously said, I liked the performances. Liam Neeson brings a credible and detailed work, while Olivia Wilde equally displays talent and beauty, solidly transmitting her character's extreme changes of attitude. Mila Kunis also left me a very good impression, and James Franco managed to bring a good performance, despite having the worst written character of the film. And Moran Atias left me pleasantly surprised with her performance. The only film I had seen her in had been La Terza Madre (that piece of junk directed by the once great Dario Argento), in which I had found her performance horrible; however, her work in Third Person is very good, displaying a much better histrionic shape. Going back to the negative elements from Third Person, despite the three stories being quite tragic and dramatic, they feel curiously cold and impersonal. They never inspire enough passion in order for us to get interested in them. I think the main reason Third Person failed is due to the "Director/Screenwriter/Producer" syndrome, aggravated by a case of "And I Have Won Two Oscars, So Nobody Tells Me What to Do", something which tends to cloud the vision from many filmmakers, making them blind to their own vision (Irony!). Despite the good performances, the excessive self-indulgence, confusion of topics and boring rhythm from Third Person avoided me from enjoying it, and I can't recommend it.
As a rule I will usually post my movie review the same evening after I have seen the movie but I wanted to give the “Third Person” awhile before giving my opinions. I don’t remember the last time I saw an audience with such puzzled faces walking out of a movie theatre as I did after the end credits were shown.
While I prefer my movies tied up in a bow with rational explanations of why/what took place I don’t mind the occasional one with ambiguous endings but sometimes the writer/director, in this case Paul Haggis, who also wrote and directed the Oscar winning “Crash”, goes a little too far. There are 3 stories going on here simultaneously but really there is a fourth which helps in adding, “What?!” to the ending. I don’t like to give spoilers so I really won’t give my explanation except to say as a writer I have written books of fiction giving characters different aspects of myself and leave it at that.
The stories revolve around Mike (Liam Neeson), Anna (Olivia Wilde) and his wife (Kim Basinger), Sean (Adrien Brody) and Monika (Moran Atias), Julia (Mila Kunis) and her ex (James Franco) and her lawyer (Maria Bello) each story involving a child, girl or boy, dead or alive.
One couple is in Paris, another in Rome and a third in New York and whether on purpose or not the writer/director Haggis will have Mila in New York, where her main story takes and place, and twice in Paris without any reason except writers have the freedom to take their story where they want.
All the actors do fine but Kunis’s make up is a bit too much even for a one time soap opera star and Brody comes up bland playing opposite Atias, an Israeli actress, as a Romanian gypsy!
I don’t know how to explain this but though the movie is interesting it is also boring, the running time being over 2 hours and 20 minutes. The film is about all aspects of love but doesn’t get the viewer involved which in the end makes it a failure.