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Adjust This – A Review of The Adjustment Bureau March 26, 2011

Posted by Lauren Cooke in Media, TV & Film.
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I came on here fully prepared to whine about something. Or to apologise about whining so much. I’m fickle like that.

Instead, I find myself unable to resist the urge to wax lyrical about the film I have just seen, The Adjustment Bureau.

Firstly, a caveat. I am a huge Matt Damon fan. From the moment I saw the utterly disturbing cinematic event that is The Talented Mr Ripley, I have been a huge advocate of his. I see in him a spark of true brilliance, and acting genius. Despite the tendency of the media to go on about Jude Laws’ performance in that film (but why?!), I think there are few performances that could beat that icy cool insanity of a man tumbling into the void. Since then, I have yet to be disappointed by anything the man turns his hand to, and it is a delight to see him avoid the trappings of becoming an (awesome) action hero.

So, clearly, I went into this film in a state of mind to enjoy. To sit back and take it in and accept the likelihood of Damon’s presence making it brilliant. I wasn’t disappointed.

the adjustment bureau

The Adjustment Bureau isn’t a unique film. The concept is fascinating, but so many elements can be likened to other films. The intricacy and questions of the Matrix. The visual celebration of Inception – although I hold that this film is actually infinitely better. And that is said as someone with a crush on both Leo and Ellen Page! So many different parts of this movie reference so many others, but rather than being a limitation, I found it actually pushed this film forward.

The Adjustment Bureau is, as discussed, many things. In addition, it is funny. Laugh out loud kind of funny. It is touching, and throughout kept me choked up, tensed in response to such suspense. It questions many concepts humanity takes for granted – love, passion, free will, faith. It answers few of these queries, instead letting the story speak for itself, and leaving us with a sense of how things may turn out, but absolutely no certainty. It is also silly, banal, absurd, all of which serve to further highlight the big issues being raised, as well as poking fun at the self-involvement of humanity. The ridiculousness of our need to have so many questions answered.

It is less mindless action than the trailers, and the posters, try to persuade us it is.

I came out of the cinema, once the film had ended, and all I could think was – “that was brilliant”.

And it was.

 

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