Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Free Radicals (2004)

Leave it to me to procure tickets to the one NYFF film that's even worse than the goddamn Sri Lankan film. Stuck this one all the way through mainly because it kept threatening to get better, which to my everlasting regret it never did. Figured I was in trouble before the opening credits finished, when the director helpfully included a shot of a butterfly in the rain forest flapping its wings (twice, in case the import somehow escaped us the first time), but the main miscalculation here is the death of one of the characters half an hour in which removes the narrative focal point, causing the entire enterprise to detonate and collapse into a pile of miserablism. All the talk about fractals and fate try to obscure this film's emptiness, but to no avail -- it's a pointless angstfest with ciphers instead of characters. Is Austria really this terrible a place to live?

Grade: D


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