This film is nothing but bourgeois self-indulgence, pill-popping melodrama against beautiful European backdrops, filled with preposterous dialogue and an endless supply of oversized hats and sunglasses. Needless to say, I loved it.
I fell in love with Angelina's character instantly. The way she impersonates such a powerful, strong woman (that she is) but so fragile and troubled makes you wanna watch her and only her the whole time. The slow pace turns into something beautiful. To succeed as a director and as an actress in the same film has got to be as hard as it sounds. I have nothing but admiration for this lady, from the bottom of my heart.
A voyeuristic cocktail of mid-century Euro art house influences. Unfortunately, rather than building on the likes of L'Avventura and Contempt, By The Sea feels like a caricature flecked with moments of brilliance. The profusion of ennui leaves the viewer indifferent, but the film is flush with beauty—from the lavish cinematography and setting in Malta to Angelina Jolie and the 1967 Citroen DS Chapron convertible.
If only brooding, sulking, and being as miserable as the characters in the film was this attractive in real life. Don't get me wrong, there's a lot to laugh at and question here, but there's a lot to commend that quietly adheres to the attributes of French New Wave. It's slight, but its insights into the vicious cycle of morose marriage and its focus on kinky voyeruism make it more interesting than it should be.
Unfortunately ignored on release and dismissed as a vanity project this is a film begging discovery. Exceptionally crafted tale of a married couple attempting to work through deep ceded marital problems has an emotional starkness and honesty not often seen in American films. Both leads offer strong performances here and Jolie-Pitt shows great maturity in her direction. Kudos to cinematographer Christian Berger.
Polished, yes. But fittingly so. An example of Americana on foreign territory, and how the beauty of the surroundings (and the people within it) could be filled with the same amount of ugly as anywhere else. This film is being misunderstood. A very humanist film about two pessimistic people; Antonionian in style, Hitchcockian at points, and Godardian sometimes, even, in approach. Influenced, but fresh in design.