For Reel

Manglehorn (2014)
July 11, 2015, 12:01 pm
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: David Gordon Green
2.5 Stars
ManglehornRecovering from a stoner comedy slump, David Gordon Green returned to his indie roots with Prince Avalanche (a woefully overlooked masterstroke) and Joe, a pair of character studies that focused on working class protagonists living with regret. Manglehorn feels like the completion of a trilogy, even if it’s a step back in many ways. Al Pacino plays the titular locksmith, a broken man who spends the picture in a haze, sparring with his investor son (Chris Messina) and mourning his failure to hold on to the woman that he loves. Dialed back as Pacino might be, his rambling style is still a distraction, and Green is too eager to exploit Pacino’s sleepy deliveries. Coupled with the aural soundscape provided by indie rockers Explosion in the Sky, Pacino’s voiceover is often lost in something like white noise, rendering it nearly indecipherable. The snippets that one can make out are unfortunately equally forgettable drivel–repetitive monologues filled with nothing but self-pitying regret. One of the saving graces is the appearance of Holly Hunter, who plays a bank clerk that takes an unlikely interest in the curmudgeon. Their first date is achingly sad, with Hunter’s cheery insistence that she wakes up excited about the world each day eventually being consumed by her own self-doubts and frustrations.

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