After 12 years of absence, Louis, a writer, goes back to his hometown, planning on announcing his upcoming death to his family. As resentment soon rewrites the course of the afternoon, fits and feuds unfold, fuelled by loneliness and doubt, while all attempts of empathy are sabotaged.
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About as in your face as family *feels*, and somehow still as nuanced and complicated and subtle as family actually is. Dolan knows how to use what he's got, and it's effective, even as it lacks sophistication. It says a lot, in fact, about the power of cinema that I could be moved to tears (never happens!) *even as* I cringed at his embarrassingly film-schoolish production choices. Kinda admirable, actually... 3.75
Despite all the family antics, this felt like Dolan's most grounded and intimate work so far. I continue to admire how brave the song choices can be... only him could pull-off an O-Zone track and win Cannes' Jury Prize with the same film. The ending was cathartic even if the big revelation never actually happened. Every character was relevant to the story and there was never a dull moment. Keep it going Dolan! <3
Family apocalypse. This movie marks a maturity in Dolan's career, not only by the chosen cast of french Hollywood royalty but for the self-drama accumulation that culminates in an explosion of tears and screams, with the constant presence of death even if never talked about. Not the most visual appealing, but the blended soundtrack of underground electronica and radio-hits is amazing.
One of the year's best. Dolan continues to divide critics with his cineaste friendly film language and ability behind the camera. Here he adapts a play by Jean-Luc Lagarce with a solid ferocity of vision, emotion and performance. The quintet of actors here are perfectly cast; some against type. The dynamic of family with its things said/unsaid is well captured with truth only a weak aspect In its machinations.
Dolan's new one is a real trial. Something remains the same: the main thing to admire about Dolan is still his ballsy chutzpah and tendency to go as BIG as possible w/ his little movies. This thing has its own philosophy going for it, and the courage of conviction. Not just them close-ups. A real dexterity in the building of filmic space. Problem: he has adapted some seriously godawful material, and mostly poorly.
A complete faux pas. I agree with Richard Lawson (GQ): "Xavier Dolan’s It’s Only the End of the World Is the Most Disappointing Film at Cannes" http://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2016/05/xavier-dolan-its-only-the-end-of-the-world-review
This was really painful to watch. The constant head-shots which work beautifully in his other films only further annoy when locked so close to a hyper-melodramatic performance by Cassel or Seydoux. Cotillard does well given the scant premise. 2.5 stars
Brief glimmers of Dolan's expressive visual style, for which he is known, is suppressed by faux dramatique dialogues of a labored, awkwardly intimate, though sincerely intellectual nature. Not his finest work, but certainly commendable for its firm stylistic command.
79/100 - Very Good. (3.5)