Birdman: Movie Review

Attributes: Movie Reviews

Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Cast:  Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone, and Naomi Watts.

Loaded with an extravagant cast and script, BIRDMAN (or the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is a beautifully turbulent movie with a mesmerising story at the core and extremely difficult in spanning it out in words.

The movie starts with Riggan Thomson (Michael Keaton) levitating in a theatre's dressing room, which is one of the many instances of a 'magical realism'. 'How did we end up here?' growls his inner voice of the 'Birdman', which was a popular super hero franchise that Thomson was a part of. Having humbled over the years of not being in the spotlight, he attempts to reclaim his long lost glory with a Broadway play.

The beauty of the film is making it look like a long steady camera shot which is achieved by clever staging and editing tricks. While the camera takes a 360 degree shot of the room, actors (in)voluntarily dip & dive out of the frame with a drum score playing in the background. The whole process tend to become chaotic but, immensely enchanting & gripping throughout each and every sequence.

The movie highlights Riggan's life, amidst circumstances created by him where his ego doesn't let him fully accept his current situation. When flustered with his own damaged self, he is seen using 'telepathy' to toss things across the room, which come as intriguing surprises throughout and even such instances, Reggan tries his best to keep calm & grounded. During the entire segment, his bipolar character of the Birdman takes multiple digs at the ego of a human being. The resentment and pettiness in our thoughts when things don't go about as per our will, leading to satirical dark reality. 

Birdman also takes a dig at the producers, makers and even the audience who hoist celebrities onto a whimsical podium wherein the actors confuse admiration with love and crash into reality the moment the flashing lights move onto some other newbie. The knicks & knacks of the film add onto to the already funny jokes, while the comparisons might tend to get a tad bit niche for some, most you will get a laugh out of from Zach Galifianakis’ 'pronunciation' of Martin “Scorsees”.

Even tough Michael Keaton hogs the lime light, others also deliver a stellar performance. There is Edward Nortan as Mike Shiner, a theatre savant who unexpectedly brings fire to Riggan's performance on stage while dealing with his own personal problems off; Zach Galifianakis as Jake, Reggan's best friend & attorney, who broke free from his stereotypical image and never seemed out of place or character; Emma Stone as Riggan's troubled daughter who got out of rehab; Naomi Watts as the leading actress Lesley; Amy Ryan as Riggan's ex-wife Sylivia and Andrea Riseborough as his current flame Laura.

With the times wherein popularity is measured so easily with 'likes', do they truly feed our soul or just curb our thirst for attention? Iñárritu addresses this question through this film, to which I give 4 SHORS for it is entertaining and fun, yet stunningly life-like. Cheers.

Tags: Birdman, Birdman Movie Review, English Movie Review, Hollywood Movie Review

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