“Here’s a cool concept. James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain made a movie about trying to hold onto a falling apart relationship. Except, they didn’t just make one movie, they made two. One from his perspective, the other from hers. The idea is that you see the same events happen, but they unfold differently according to each’s memory and perspective. Well that’s a cool idea, and it was pretty well received on the festival circuit, but then the people who decide these things figured that most audiences would not want to sit thru 4 hours of the same story twice. So there was a third movie which combined the two. That’s the version that I just saw. Subtitled: Them. (As opposed to subtitled: Him or subtitled: Her).
I was really hoping that we’d still see the dual perspective, just maybe for not as many scenes as the fully realized versions. Nope. It was all edited together to be a normal movie, such that if you didn’t know the gimmick that was employed, you’d never have had any idea. Needless to say, kinda disappointed.
As a regular film, it was okay. That cast was its saving grace. Chastain is such a committed and engaging actress, and McAvoy is equally engaging and charming. Without them, I would have been bored. It’s just not the kind of story I’d have been otherwise interested in. Oh also, the title is a bit misleading. I thought there would be some mystery to her disappearing, but no, she just ran off, and you see where she is the whole time. Maybe it was a bit more obvious in the separate versions, but together it’s not as effective.
I’m still kinda interested in seeing the split versions, but not any time soon. Not really in a hurry to sit thru it again.
Last second bonus points for the supporting cast. Bill Hader and Viola Davis in particular. Then again, any movie with them will always earn a couple extra bonus points. (Disclaimer: bonus points may but are not required to be reflected in a film’s rating)
The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby – \m/ \m/ \n”