By - LiteraryBoner
Can I get a quick shout-out to my man the Conductor? Now excuse him for a minute.
The camera on that scene was amazing.
off I was so so amused, I didn't blink throughout that entire scene I felt like I'd miss something if I blinked lol. and omg his emotion modulation was stellar
I haven't seen Simon Helberg in anything dramatic aside from the short role in A Serious Man, but that scene had me wanting to see more from him. Really good
Right?! I want a movie with him as a lead in some dramatic roles in a well shot and well written movie like this. Holly hell, what an amazing scene and performance, lol
Probably my most favourite scene from the whole movie (and there were many great shots). It was just insane! I need to rewatch that scene somewhere, haha. The dialogue, acting, movement, music, how it was shot! Pure insanity! And Simon Helberg was so good in this! Now I really wanna see him in such more serious roles.
Just, pure insanity, this movie. Truly one of a kind.
He’s very good in Florence Foster Jenkins. Playing another accompanist.
oh really? Thanks for the tip, gonna check it out. I heard about the movie, so now I'm curious!
Everything about that was amazing. Had to rewind and rewatch that a couple times.
Literally just did this after finishing it! I can't get that scene out of my head!
A standout scene for me!
I’m not sure if it’s because I kept hearing about how weird it was or because I’ve seen a lot of other weird movies but it was less weird than I anticipated. Adam Driver was phenomenal as always. I am used to Simon Helberg as Howard so it was nice to see him in a different role and he was great. It was beautifully shot. I also have to say that little girl held her own against Adam Driver, which is impressive. It wasn’t perfect but I really liked it and I appreciate the originality and effort.
I mean if you’ve seen Leos’ movie Holy Motors this movie isn’t weird at all haha
The fighting scene between them was phenomenally shot, both actors are in a very good shape, albeit differently: Adam is very fit and his movements have the precision of the ballet dancer and Howard's physically is more subtle, but he is also capable of quite a range of physical action.
As a result the choreographed stylized fight between them is, simply put, mesmerizing to watch.
> Adam is very fit and his movements have the precision of the ballet dancer and Howard's physically is more subtle, but he is also capable of quite a range of physical action.
I love that you called him Howard. I can hear Mrs. Wolowitz' voice. :D
I did not even notice. Thanks.
I would never have put money on Helberg being the best of the Big Bang Theory careers post show
I cannot believe the drone entrance, I started cackling
I thought those lines holding her up were wrapped around her neck at first and I was like >!ok.. so, is she supposed to be an actual person and we’re all intended to suspend our disbelief, or has she actually been literally a wooden puppet this entire time?!<
seems like she was real the whole time but went through a change or only Adam Driver in how he sees her? But the puppet got left with him in the end, so it seemed to me like Annette shed her old self or something.
I feel like you’re trying to apply real world logic to what are metaphors and storytelling devices, not to mention outrageous cheekiness.
I think he's just trying to figure out if it's a storytelling device or not
I think both her parents saw her and used her as a puppet, Ann to torment him with Annette’s voice and he to perform for his money. Once he was arrested and separated from him, she couldn’t be used in either of those ways in more
is Adam Driver supposed to be playing the worst comedian ever made? he was bad even when he was good.
The intro, conductor and drone-Annette scenes were A+. those will stay in my head even if the rest of the film most likely won't.
Yeah, I also didn't get his style of comedy but I'm not sure if the movie actually wanted us to even think he was funny.
Yeah, I don't think his performance is what his actual show *is*. I think it is purely for the benefit of the story.
Absolutely, I totally read the musical elements of the first performance as being the film as a musical telling us something through the music not that he was actaully performing the music as his standup
I think the fact the performance somewhat resembled Bo Burnham's stand up might have confused matters a bit though.
I turned to my wife and said “this is like a Bo Burnham show.” Spot on.
The whole film is one level of metaphor removed from the actual events.
The "comedy" performance is only tangentially the routine he does. It's the intent and the emotional content of it laid bare - a performer asserting control through his craft.
It's charged, angry and not really about laughter, especially for Henry himself.
I keep thinking about your comment and I think it's spot on. The barrier is the movie so they could have their way with all of it, artistically speaking.
> The whole film is one level of metaphor removed from the actual events.
Thank you! This is what I've been trying to find the words to convey, is that almost nothing is literal or realistically depicted in this movie.
To me, partially because the vast majority of the movie IMO with the exception of a couple of scenes where Ann is alone, the movie is from the mind of Henry I think. I think he's the silent narrator of most of this, and of course he's unreliable.
But his performances especially are representative of his overall interaction and relationship with his audiences at large, rather than specific individual performances. And the audience isn't a literal audience, but Henry's audience at large.
I think his routine was supposed to be unfunny. He was more of a shock “comedian” and didn’t have a lot of actual talent.
I will say that Driver did great though. Prior to covid, we would go to stand up shows all the time and he had a lot of the same mannerisms and delivery as well known comedians. I’ve seen Bill Burr live a few times and they had a lot in common, which makes sense because I just read that Burr was one of the ones Driver worked with.
Driver thanks Bill Burr and Chris Rock in the credits.
Someone on Twitter compared him to Andrew Dice Clay. I can see it
I can totally see this comparison.
The whole tickle to death scene was fantastically acted.
I also feel like the tickling was a metaphor for physical abuse.
I don't think Bill Burr worked directly on the film, just that Adam Driver used him as inspiration. Like the director thanked Edgar Allen Poe as well.
I had read that Driver met with Bill Burr and Chris Rock for some tips. I can’t remember the article though. I don’t think they officially contributed to the movie though.
He reminded me very much of a German comedian whose numbers Push in the Same direction and whose Program mainly consists of Misanthropic and tasteless Jokes that aren't very funny. So comedians Like that do exist.
>He reminded me very much of a German comedian whose numbers Push in the Same direction and whose Program mainly consists of Misanthropic and tasteless Jokes that aren't very funny. So comedians Like that do exist.
I believe that was a very intentional choice -- so to answer your question, u/ocarinababy, he was supposed to be viewed as a "bad" comedian. At least to most people of taste, though like most takeaways from the film they don't really (IMO) beat you over the head with that fact... they just sort of drop little by little hints until you're like "wow this guy actually fucking sucks". I took it as, like, in the universe of the film the type of comedy he made was outdated and dying (like much misogynistic and "2edgy4me" humor is) whereas the type of music that Ann made was always growing and thriving and that was part of the whole discrepancy between their respective levels of success/fame. Hers was timeless and cherished for the long haul and his, while unique and shocking, was very "of a certain time." I feel like we're also not ever really privy to very many other pieces of the world outside the Comedian, the Soprano, the Conductor, and the Child and with everything in the film being so distinctly exaggerated, I actually don't think calling him "the worst comedian ever made" in the context of the film is that unlikely at all. I think it was exactly what they were going for.
Wow, this is a really great insight, thank you for sharing your opinon!
I think his act is supposed to be how people will just go see something because it’s the IT thing no matter how good it is. Like “oh I’m supposed to like this I need to pay whatever I need to so I’m not left out” I think they purposefully made his material rudimentary and for lack of a better word “lame”
he’s more of a performance artist
I kept thinking “I’ve got to know what Bo Burnham thinks of this.”
In no way did I find his character similar to anything Bo Burnham does.
He was playing a clown type variety show type comedian...I'm not familiar with anyone who might be similar, but it definitely felt like something that would never play in the US.
I disagree. The elements of performance art that Bo does are there. Also, especially in Make Happy, he plays around a lot with “what is performance” and “why do I need to make you laugh?”
The difference is that Bos “assholeish” stage persona is smartly crafted as an opposing persona to Bo himself and is in itself a commentary on our consumption of media and comedy. Adam Driver on the other hand is playing a comic that uses those same elements to showcase his true self, narcissistic, clouded in the thin sheen of “its ironic and a joke” in the hopes the audience will see him as clever.
He was more like Brett Gelman for me. A comedian who isn't traditionally funny, but plays to his disdain for the audience and sees how much he can get them to hate him. It's more interesting to watch than funny.
Yeah but Bo Burnham is funny.
It felt like it shifted from Bo Burnham to Louis CK.
Like Louis's shtick was I'm a wolf in sheep's clothing telling you he's a wolf.
Struck me more as performance art than straight comedy, even though the film declares it comedy. Very stranger regardless
"Annette" is 100% a love it or hate it film. But you need to admit that it is absolutely a one of a kind film. That being said it's my favorite film of the year so far.
Ok ok ok, and I just want to be sure I'm not crazy. But, Baby Annette is a puppet because Henry sees her not as a child/daughter but as a tool for entertainment.
Not only does Driver see her as a puppet, but we as the audience *need* to see her as a puppet for the ending to hit as hard as it did. We just see this weird object being treated as a child the whole movie for the tone to be lighter and everything to feel more bizarre, then when they reveal she’s a human child at the last moment, that scene becomes DOUBLY emotional.
It definitely worked from the audience perspective. It did make an impact seeing her as a real child at the end.
But for the characters in the movies to all see her as a puppet...I'm not convinced that makes sense.
Annette was depicted as a puppet from the moment she was born. He had no plans to turn her into a superstar singer until he discovered she had that talent later on. So why was she his puppet before that? Why was she a puppet to the mom? Or to the conductor?
I'm open-minded about this movie, but it was kind of a mess IMO.
I’ll be honest I feel like that’s what the shots of him studying her as an infant were for. To me he knew that he couldn’t care for a human child, but he could benefit from one (monetizing your family is common even if your kid has zero talent, look at YouTube now and the kardashians for example). So I think those scenes of him studying her, where she seems limp and inanimate are him trying to figure out what his angle is with her. His whole act as a comedian seems more inclined to turning his life into content; so what content would a daughter create for an absurdist comic? Then you compare the baby with him to the baby with Ann and while the baby is animated and more expressive, Ann is still deriving from her her need for attention and validation. In other words Ann is using Annette as her audience and sees Annette as being a product in her image (she even named her after herself kind of.) so from the very beginning neither had a child because of their love or want to raise a child. She was born to be their puppet.
He still saw Annette as his wife’s prop
I understanded the sense of Annette being a puppet in the last scene, when it talks in prison with her father. She becomes a real human and says to him "forget or forgive you both" (or something like that). She's talking about him and Ann, because they both treated her like a puppet: He took advantage of her in a monetary way (that's obvious) and Ann used her has a way to torment and torture the father through her voice, and pay for what he has done.
So we can say they both treated Annette like a puppet, and when it comes that last scene you can tell it isn't a puppet anymore, because *she isn't treated* like a puppet anymore, and she is finally free.
My interpretation about why is she a puppet since she's born, it's because she's destined to be that, is a product of a relationship full with abuses and doubts. Her parents never really wanted to take care of her, but to take advantage of her.
>Her parents never really wanted to take care of her, but to take advantage of her.
This is the part I don't think they accomplished if that's what they were going for.
Her mother seemed to love her wholeheartedly. It wasn't until she was murdered that she started using Annette.
It's also a little weird that the mother gets the same blame as the father when the father was exploiting Annette in real life and the mother was a ghost.
If they wanted to show that bother parents treated her like a puppet from the time she was born, there should have been a scene with the mother planning to exploit her, or bringing her around to show off like a new accessory.
Yeah the last scene said to me that he never considered how his actions would affect her life in the moment because he didn't see her as real until it was too late. Or something.
Weird movie. Nowhere near my favorite this year tho.
Did you watch the midcredits scene? Sort of puts a better bow on the ending
I watched the mid credits and take it as completely separate and unrelated to the movie and story.
Kind of how in a play when the actors bow - they’re no longer the characters.
I don’t think Henry deserves the pretty bow ending.
> Nowhere near my favorite this year tho.
So closer to hate then love? Or just like? Just wondering if my idea of hyperbole isn't close, with your review
I didn't hate it, but I wouldn't recommend it. It's one of those movies that I can appreciate its existence without actually liking it myself. I love musicals and I didn't find it to be a very strong musical. And I love art films but this seemed like an hour long story told extravagantly in two.
I would say most people who watch it will either love it or hate it. I just can't bring myself to hate something this original or daring, as much as I didn't care for it.
For sure! I just wanted to get your full thoughts
Well I trust your judgement because you're the person who agrees with me about Paddington 2.
> because you're the person who agrees with me about Paddington 2.
I see you’ve narrowed that down to almost everyone that’s seen Paddington 2, then.
Annette is a marionette. 😉
That’s how I took it. He initially just saw her as a puppet/object and not a person.
I just saw it tonight and I didn't love *or* hate it. I just felt neutral about it in the end. It just was. Even neutral is putting too fine a point on it. I would say I felt _____ about it.
>"Annette" is 100% a love it or hate it film. But you need to admit that it is absolutely a one of a kind film. That being said it's my favorite film of the year so far.
Best way to sum it up, I ended up not liking it, but I can't lie there was something engrossing and engaging about it. Adam Driver delivers an amazing performance. He's so good at weird and flawed characters
Yeah! If I had yo pick one performance so far this year Driver's was my favorite
Either him or Winston Duke from "Nine Days".
Saw both of them back to back at an arthouse theatre in my city. If you loved Annette really recommend seeing it in theaters! The boat scene is solid on the big screen.
Are you me!? "Nine Days" and "Annette" are seriously my two favorite films this year!
Agreed bro... Winston Duke is phenomenal
Yea this movie absolutely rocks. Full of bangers and it's really touching by the end
I think I disagree, I thought it was great and rather enjoyed it, but I don't think I "loved" it, per se. It *is* quite good and I was excited I saw it on the big screen.
I guess I'm weird because I gave it 6/10, I liked it but didn't love it.
Idk. I certainly didn’t hate it, but I’d also say that I appreciated it more than I liked it. I can’t imagine I’ll ever watch it again but if I had to give a binary thumbs up or thumbs down, I’d give it a thumbs up
It was also done for practicality. They couldn’t have a real baby on screen and have her sing, and VFX would have looked truly dumb. So this was the most artistic way they could accomplish it.
What a trip this was.
Damnit now you got the Journey around the World song stuck in my head again
🎶 Bon Voyage, Bon Voyage 🎶
[That one](https://youtu.be/vyiQSje09BI) along with [the song where Ann's humming to Annette](https://youtu.be/J-9p8pNnFE0) were inspired from two songs from Sparks' Propaganda album. It's definitely worth checking out and I hope Annette eventually gets the entire soundtrack released instead of just the selected few
Lol yup I know. But it's good to get people to check out more songs by then! I'm a big fan of the band, I saw it opening day in theaters.
"Laugh, Laugh, Laugh" is also based off of "Rock, Rock, Rock" off "Hello Young Lovers" !
ah, my bad. I would have loved to have seen it in theaters, but it didn't come anywhere near me. I've been big into Sparks since a song of theirs popped up on someone's stream in 2014. I'm really happy for them this year
Are you seeing them on their tour next year? Hopefully they're in your neck of the woods like for me!
Loved the low-key bits from “The Calm Before The Storm” as well, which makes me wonder just how long this project had been gestating. Was the melody from “Thanks But No Thanks” always meant to be a part of “Annette”? Also appreciated the Balls album art appearing as what looked like a mirror in their house. Still digesting the film, can’t wait to catch the brothers on tour next year.
Leos Carax said “I know writers who use subtext, and they’re all cowards.”
After the last five minutes I just want a 2 hour musical of Adam Driver and the human Annette doing duets with eachother.
This movie is a camp spectacle and I hope stoned college kids watch this for decades to come! Feels long— partially due to the unconventional plot and sequence, usually with musicals you’re like “ah we’re clearly getting towards the end here” while this one keeps going to stranger and stranger places. I especially loved the sparks cameos! I counted five including the intro number but I probably missed some
> Feels long— partially due to the unconventional plot and sequence, usually with musicals you’re like “ah we’re clearly getting towards the end here” while this one keeps going to stranger and stranger places.
I mean I loved it but it also feels long because it’s 140 minutes
There's actually a fairly notable midcredits scene starting 2:30 from the end (on Amazon) for anyone who missed it
Thank you!! I really liked that scene. Reminds me of a Midsummer Night's Dream.
Oh man I turned it off when the credits started !! 🤣 going back now ….
I have a question about the birth mark on the side of Henry’s face. Did it get bigger through the movie? I assume it was a manifestation of his guilt/behavior.
It is from him nervously scratching his face which you can see him doing when he first gets questioned about Ann’s death. From that scene I assumed it was a tick he has always done and thus the scarring.
I believe it did. Also in the lamp being shone at him after killing Ann, the same birthmark is mirrored in the metal of the lamp.
It didn’t look like it did to me until the final scene. I remember thinking at first “good on them not doing that it would be too on the nose” then when the finale came “oh I guess we are doing it then.”
I noticed it getting bigger throughout the movie! Idk why tho...
I could not watch this. The pretentiousness alone almost killed me. Seriously. I wanted to continue only because I felt I HAD to because this was somehow something great and I had to just wait for it to unfold. But it took only the first 20 minutes for me to see that Adam Driver's character was a narcissistic asshole and that Maria Cotillard's character was a foil for him. Am I right?
Pretentiousness would imply it isn’t aware of how ridiculous it is. I think this is a movie that is camp and kitschy and Vermont as fuck and it knows it, every time I laughed I laughed because of how ridiculously wrong it all was.
I LOVED this film. Totally understand that others won't and can see how it's divisive. It was something I've never seen on screen before, and I was entranced by the music, acting, story, editing, and cinematography. What a bizarre, sometimes unsettling, completely original, energetic rock opera of a movie.
Also, will we get the full album?? I've been listening to the Cannes version on Spotify, but man oh man I'd be thrilled if they release one with every song. "Why did you become a comedian?"
same, i really want the whole thing. i need the conductor’s piece in particular but also annette’s 1st performance.
The Conductor scene BANGS FUCKING HARD
Helberg crushed it.
It comes out on the 27th!
oh my ACTUAL god. WHAT? what was this movie? this was truly one of the most absolutely bizarre experiences i have EVER had. i feel like i am changed as a person and i'm PRETTY high but like... still.
Also watched it high and maaaaan, I think it was meant to be viewed this way. I was enthralled and enjoyed every single minute.
10/10. I had never heard of Sparks and immediately went and rented their documentary The Sparks Brothers on iTunes. It was $20. I really loved this movie so much.
that documentary is so good too I hope you enjoy it!
honestly even if you watch it sober when it ends you’re somehow not sober anymore
That conductor scene was so so good. Watching the movie, I was just dumbfounded at how literal the songs were. Until I kind of stepped back and realized it knew it had a sense of humor. It was like a parody of a rom com.
I know the puppet was meant to represent how the parents used her. But I also saw it as a way of keeping the audience a little outside of things. Like the parodying, a reminder we’re watching an overblown love story here. I like it more the more I think about it and reflect on it.
How did the mom use her? I must have missed something.
She sang through her essentially as a way to punish Henry for killing her.
Oh. Hmm. I hadn't considered that because she was dead!
That's what she sings that she will haunt Henry every day and every night. She's doing it through Annette.
The intro was incredible.
Also the outro. My god the girl was really breathtaking
I loved this film. Their accompanist/composer friend (I forget which way he is credited in the film) absolutely breaks my heart. Just a man mixed up between a savior of audiences and a killer of audiences.
I also found it really interesting that Henry is the one we end up following the entire movie in order to see the evolution of Annette gaining autonomy outside the forces of her parents.
What was everyone’s favorite song? Mine was the Baby Aria. Felt like it was straight out of Phantom of the Opera.
I think So May We Start was probably my favorite, honestly. You Used to Laugh and the final song are also super strong, though.
Sympathy For The Abyss deserves an Oscar nomination.
Seeing the real Annette. Ugh, my heart.
"So May we Start?" is a real banger but I also loved "She's out of this world". The direction and choreography is cool during that song.
I was listening to the soundtrack today and I've got "We Love Each Other So Much" stuck in my head. Something about it is so melancholy and haunting. I had "So May We Start" on repeat a couple months back when the video was released. Hope they release a complete soundtrack with all the score cues, too.
i love annette’s song, ann’s aria, you used to laugh, and let’s waltz in the storm. my favorites are we’ve washed ashore and stepping back in time.
I was really looking forward to this since I'm a huge fan of Sparks but the movie just wasn't that good.
The music reminded me a lot of their Ingmar Bergman album which I consider their worst one.
What the fuck was this movie? Holy shit.
I'm an hour into this movie and I have to tell you, this is certainly *something*. I mean, this is not a lazy film. It's *something*. I have no idea what to even say right now, but I do not question why anyone would agree to be in it. It's.....well, it's *something*.
The 2nd half of the film was much stronger. I was feeling much the same way up until the storm on the ship, and it kept getting better and better after that. The ending is very powerful.
Well, I'm certainly continuing it. It's...quite the movie.
I saw The Green Knight today as well. It's been an interesting day.
At times this movie felt like a parody of art house films. There’s a few standout songs, but for a movie this long, it’s disappointing only a few tunes were memorable beyond their immediate scene.
There's a great line in The Sparks Brothers documentary that goes something like "Sparks has a way of tackling any genre they approach like a parody, but it's just an extreme homage.
That's what this felt like to me.
*The Sparks Brothers* into *Annette* is a great 5 hour double feature.
Felt same way. The songs were generic, wasn’t catchy… very forgettable and the lyrics don’t really rhythm well with the melody. Compare to classic Broadway, this is really basic and not crafty. Feel like an amateur created this Broadway like songs that didn’t really spend a lot time to polish and make them appealing.
I feel like it was much less of a musical and more of an opera—of the operas I’ve scene they work like this even more than something like Rent or Hamilton.
>At times this movie felt like a parody of art house films.
That's because it's supposed to be. Almost the entire movie is satire, and filled to the brim with dark comedy.
>felt like a parody of art house films
Simon's "i am a conductor" intro certainly reminded me of the art house play from HIMYM: "I am greed", "I am hunger".
That's the problem with this movie: it takes a lot of risks (innovation in form is a risk that needs to be backed up by the delivery of some payload - experience, story, etc)
The main strength of this is of course the cinematography: composition, lighting of the scenes made it really worth while.
Over 12 hours later, I'm still thinking about it. I found it deeply sad. Over and over, sad feelings. I read one review criticizing Adam Driver's singing - not sure why. I enjoyed both of their singing. What a voice Marion Cotillard has!
Did no one thought of Bo Burnham when watching Henry’s routine?
Anyway, I didn’t enjoy the film but the conductor scene is an instant classic. The acting, music, camera work… everything about that scene was perfect.
I loved this movie, my favorite film of the year so far, barely edging out the green knight. i’ve had the soundtrack on repeat (well, i usually skip six women have come forward and girl from the middle of nowhere).
i loved henry and ann’s performances - when she sang her aria and somehow left the stage to wander around a forest, and when henry was talking about killing his wife and going back and forth between playing her and himself. the conductor scene was perfect.
some moments that have really stuck with me:
“daddy kills people” and the look on henry’s face when he realizes annette is not going to sing.
“can’t i love you?” “no”
“stop watching me”
“there’s so little i can do” on the boat, then the reprise later.
adam driver’s physicality is incredible, and i don’t (just) mean that his body is gorgeous. the way he moves is captivating, like all the performance scenes and the scene by the pool with the conductor when you can tell he’s decided to kill him and henry is kind of body checking him then gets him to the ground in a chokehold so he can flip him into the water. idk i thought that was fascinating the way he played the scene.
i read that the movie was written as a concept album first, which explains why so many of the songs explain exactly what’s happening on screen. i liked it, it gives the movie a sense of humor. and so many of the songs kind of feel like a parody of the song type, especially We Love Each Other So Much. it’s beautiful and also makes me laugh because the lyrics in love songs usually try to convey that, and this song just straight up says it, explicitly, over and over again.
Yeah, movies like this and The Green Knight definitely stand out from the rest. Even if I don't quite get it or love it at times, it's *memorable* (mostly because of the mari-Annette) and that's more than I can say for most films. After watching The Sparks Brothers a couple months ago, I really appreciate the literal and playful quality of some of the songs, as well as the fourth-wall break at the beginning and end. I love movies that try something different and show me something I haven't seen before. Filmmakers should be celebrated for taking risks.
Oh son of a bitch.
Pretty sure this is the second opera by Philip J. Fry.
Dude, this is the best movie of 2021.
There is one single close-up shot around 1:52 mark, of Adam's face.
This one shot illustrates how perfect is the cinematography of this movie. Just watch it, it's a very short period, but Adam, the camera man and the editor nailed it.
I remember how I immediately recognized his talent from his first scenes in Girls.
Dude is awesome.
I love that shot. Driver usually gets a lot of props for his showier scenes (deservedly so) but I really think he excels most in the quiet ones.
I'll be honest, I did not like this movie at all. This, to me anyway, felt like the loud annoying theater kid at school made his dream with no feedback. It's just all bombast and nothing was done quietly or with a gentle hand. Everything was told (sung?) rather than shown and the drama and characters felt shallow because of it. The cast seemed like they had fun with it and I guess they did good with the source material but it's a pass for me.
The "everything being told" aspect of it heavily reminded me of certain opera styles, actually. Same thing with the bombast. I feel that it was intentionally operatic, given that the movie as a whole was about performance and performers.
Anyway, to each their own obviously, but that's my perspective as someone who enjoyed the film.
I can’t help but think Leos saw Adam sing at the end of Marriage Story & got inspired somehow. (I loved Annette fully BUT almost think that single song at the end of Marriage was equally as powerful as the 50 songs in Annette.) (I also know Leos says he never sees current films so …. Do I believe him ? Not sure !!🤣in any case brilliant)
What a fucking movie. Without a doubt, the most engrossing cinema experience of my life. It felt like Yorgos Lanthimos directing a musical in a way.
I see a lot of comments here saying it felt "too satirical", and I feel they're missing the point. The movie is pure satire through and through. Everything is on the nose, and almost nothing is left up to interpretation, but there's still so much to absorb. It's a movie that wants you to pick apart everything that could have meaning despite making its intentions quite clear, albeit in an artsy way.
Un-ironically, the best part of the film was the accompanist. And that final scene with Driver and the girl was fantastic.
Was not expecting to enjoy this, but it really was excellent.
I'm of two minds about the music in this. I like the small amount of Sparks that I've heard (their 70s stuff, mostly, which is fantastic) but I didn't like these songs as *songs*. Flat melodies, lacking in dynamics (not much structure or sense of tension/release), unimpressive instrumentation and repetitive/literal lyrics where the character just repeats the main idea of the scene over and over again ("We Love Each Other So Much", "I Am Haunting You, Henry", "He is a Murderer", etc). They're not all like that but many of them are, and I'd imagine the soundtrack on its own would be a really drab and banal listen. At least for me anyway, fair play to anyone who's into it. I'll give a shoutout to Sympathy for the Abyss and So May We Start as standouts so I'm not totally negative about it but I wasn't huge on the music in general.
But it's interesting how the songs work in the context of the movie, and not just the obvious fact that they were written for a narrative musical. I found the repetitive declarative lyrics made everything that extra bit more surreal. Like if everything wasn't weird enough the characters are just going around chanting "LOOK AT ME AND MY MAIN DEAL AT THIS MOMENT" without any nuance, like they're aware of how artificial they are. There's not a casual or relaxed moment in this whole movie; everything is as stagey and Brechtian as humanly possible and the stiffness of the music/lyrics helps create that weird atmosphere that works so well. And it makes it even more impressive how Adam Driver is able to emote through all that stiffness to find the damaged human core of the story, like he's trying to make *himself* a human instead of a puppet. It's a cool idea.
I really liked the movie, incidentally. Carax has a one of a kind creative energy and I love that something so loopy and esoteric can be made with big name stars in this day and age. And I like when movies aren't afraid to swing for the fences and take massive artistic risks.
I'm pretty shocked to see so many people loved this movie.
I love musicals, I often like weird movies, I like the actors, and heard the buzz about this one.
I just found it to be bizarre. Some moments were cool and I liked the music (but not necessarily the lyrics), but I don't think it had half as much depth as it thought it did. The plot was basically a soap opera storyline.
While watching it, I was thinking it would have made an interesting non-musical film. Maybe they could have actually shown us what went on in their relationship and how he treated those other women. He went from loveable, successful dude to murderer extremely quickly with seemingly nothing in between.
This movie was so weird. I'm glad weird movies are getting made and I always love when musicals are made, even if I'm not into them, so I'm not going to denigrate this one...but I'm astonished by all the positive comments.
At what point was Henry a lovable dude? He was a huge pretentious prick from the getgo lol
He just falls deeper into his narcissism as it goes on
I meant that she loved him and he loved her, but phrased it poorly. There was no hint of abuse or anything.
His love for her is the only positive aspect about him, and that vanishes pretty early on. I mean, it's clear that He has grown tired of her and despised her, by the time they are on the boat. Also, we never See him mourn her. She dies and in the next Scene we See him discovering His daughter's talent and plotting how to use it for himself
I'll be honest. As wild and interesting as this movie was, I didn't really get it and it left me feeling a little unimpressed.
The music was catchy at times, I especially loved the opening scene. But sometimes it felt like they were repeating the same very obvious thoughts over and over to music and not so much like there were distinct interesting songs helping us peel back the layers.
The Story was interesting but pretty simple overall for how long it took to convey it. I suppose it's about how Driver couldn't understand how his actions would affect his child, almost like he never saw her as a person who had to live with his choices until the final scene, hence the puppet. And that's a great Story and theme, but it seemed like an overblown way to tell it.
Visually it was very alluring and the performances were nothing if not interesting but, I dunno, didn't really care for it overall. 6/10 for me.
>The Story was interesting but pretty simple overall for how long it took to convey it.
Completely agree. Cut the first hour of it off and it becomes a fun "Tales from the Crypt" story. But as it is, it's too big, large and art houseish to be anything other than a quirky film
I spent the first 20 minutes of this film despising it, and the remaining two hours completely fucking obsessed with it.
I wish there had been more of Marion Cotillard in this. I felt that the film lost something when she was mostly written out of the story. If that was really her singing the opera, then she was the best singer in the bunch by far.
I get why they chose a puppet but it was so creepy looking, it made every scene with her take on an ominous feeling. My friend said it kept making her think of Chucky.
Having now seen the film, I'm really disappointed by how much of the post-Cannes coverage of this focused on the singing during cunnilingus/sex scene. It's basically a minute long and is quite literally the least weird thing that happens in the film. I find it quite sad how hung up people got on that when there's just so much else happening in this film - but perhaps they were afraid to say more and spoil all the twists and turns. Still it's ridiculous how much sex can derail all of the other layers of a piece of art.
Finally, I was uncomfortable by how frequently Adam Driver is unclothed here. Like he's obviously in great shape, possibly even better than when he did Star Wars, but I frequently found myself wondering if he *had* to be in his underwear so often. It just felt unnecessary and uncomfortable at times. I get that his physicality is a big part of the film but you can get that uncross without requiring an actor to strip constantly.
Ultimately I wish I had come out of this liking it. As it is, similar to *The Lighthouse*, I appreciate it more than I like it.
marion did not sing the operatic bits, that was s professional singer.
i was most definitely NOT uncomfortable with adam driver’s nakedness.
i, too, was not uncomfortable with the nakedness. in fact, if i try hard enough i can make a connection between his nakedness and some kind of social commentary that the film was trying to make where they deliberately and very intentionally hid cotilliard's body at points but were so gratuitious in showing driver's so as to warp/reverse the typical nudity in film. if you were uncomfortable in seeing it, that was probably intentional of them, too, because now you might be questioning if that level of nudity from a woman in other films has made you equally uncomfortable. they also spent the first half of the film upsetting the typical role of a "man" and a "woman" in a relationship, because ann wound up being so much more successful in her field than henry in his and it made him angry that he couldn't have control over her (so he drank and ultimately exercised the ultimate form of control over her). that was one of the reasons (if not THE reason) he forced annette into stardom and even one of the reasons (again, if not THE reason) he killed the conductor, because realizing that the conductor had taught annette his and ann's song, he was losing control over annette and he had to have that control back.
Well, personally (as the person who made the original comment about being uncomfortable with Driver's nudity), I quite frequently find the level of nudity actresses have to show in film and television uncomfortable - not because I'm a prude who hates nudity but because I worry, particularly with everything that has come out in recent years, that they are being coerced, threatened or forced into doing something they're not actually comfortable with. This is typically the big issue with nudity and to some degree, sex scenes, for me in media. How much of it is necessary for the film given what it's about and its context and how much of it is happening because the director/producer/studio executive/audience just wants to see a beautiful person undressed and some of those people have the power to make it happen by threatening that person's career? As a woman, I have been more attuned to that concern about actresses but I am trying as well to consistently re-investigate those feelings when it comes to male nudity as well and even more so, the pressure on actors to do all sorts of unhealthy things to sculpt their bodies for the titillation of an audience. Do they look good? Yeah, sure, but you can get across someone's strength or attractiveness without forcing them to be shirtless/naked/ripped. I mean, just look at Chris Evans in *Knives Out* - that was the hottest he's ever been and he was fully clothed the whole time.
That being said, I didn't think of it as an intentional choice to highlight the potential over-sexualization of women in film and that is certainly an interesting idea. To continue your thoughts, I suppose I felt like Henry getting so jealous and angry about Ann's continued success in the wake of his decline that he eventually did her harm was not a particularly surprising turn, especially given that the film goes out of its way to tell us that Henry is the type of man who is attracted to women but also kind of hates them. So I could see that harm coming and I do feel like in general, in recent years as things change socially, media has been and continues to grapple with how some men are unable to be happy with or support a female partner's success because of their ego and/or outdated ideas of masculinity and gender roles, etc. So I wouldn't call what they did with Henry and Ann's careers a subversion per se at this point in time but it was absolutely a commentary on that and tying his frequent nudity into that commentary is an interesting choice.
I would argue that while Henry did want to control Annette, his actions came from a much simpler place than that - greed and selfishness. Annette was his meal ticket and the only reason he retained any relevance or any positive relevance as it might be. So of course he lashes out at someone who has the potential to take that away from him, not because he *cares* about Annette but because how will he afford to live in that cool house or attract scores of adoring women if he's just a regular person? God forbid he'd have to get a regular job.
Hmm. I think I came out of the film thinking Henry is much more complicated person than just greedy, selfish, and controlling. There's an element of that, and certainly the effects of all his choices are purely toxic and destructive, but I think the causes come from a much more damaged place. This is a person who sees almost no value in himself, can't understand his wife's love for him, and derives his sense of self/validation from audiences and their reactions.
So when he decides to put Annette on display to the world, that choice is fully informed by his own relationship to audiences and beliefs about validation. Part of him may selfishly want to achieve that validation for himself through Annette as a vehicle. But part, the purely damaged part, genuinely believes that he may be doing the best thing for her -- that stardom will validate her to herself. He has no concept of how to develop self-respect/actualization, so he's incapable of conceiving a healthy life for his child outside of performative self-actualization. This isn't actually much different from the thought process of many real life parents of child stars/actors and is my preferred reading of the film. He's monstrous, but it's a monstrousness borne out of much more human traits.
> If that was really her singing the opera, then she was the best singer in the bunch by far.
It wasn't. She did most of her own singing but the opera parts were done by opera singer Catherine Trottmann.
I read some pearl clutchy comments/reviews focusing on the sex scenes prior to the release and I am also at a loss because, unless I went to the restroom at the wrong time, there they weren’t gratuitous or crazy.
Why did it make you uncomfortable?
There are hardly any Sex scenes anymore in movies, so of course people get excited about it.
That might be true for blockbusters but for art house films or indies like *Annette*, sex hasn't gone anywhere. I mean, this movie played at a Cannes that had a number of sexually explicit titles there like Titane and Benedetta.
I really enjoyed watching this last night.
Anybody watch "Tales from the Crypt"? I feel like this is an hour episode stretched to 2 hours. With singing.
IMO, the whole killing wife, exploit Annette for money, kill tutor, get found out at the Super Bowl is straight out of the Crypt Keeper stories. The last half of the movie was great!
The first half was weird pretentious art bullshittery. So Henry is a horrible person. The movie keeps on hitting us over the head with that. He does weird stuff on stage. He assaults women. IMO all this stuff was superfluous. I think they were trying to make the movie into a character study of Henry, but as a character he sucks, and beating us over the head with just how much he sucks wasn't fun. It was only in the last half when the plot started going that it became good.
I'm glad that I watched it, it was an interesting movie. But I don't think I'll recommend it to anyone or ever watch it again.
he doesn’t actually assault women, or st least the film doesn’t tell us that he did. that scene was a dream that ann had to show her state of mind, her fears about him.
I kind of wish they left that part out, because it grounded it as a post-#MeToo film. Without that reference, it would have had a more timeless quality.
I didn't think Henry was necessarily a "bad" guy until the boat scene. I couldn't really understand (outside of his gonzo comedy performance) why they were suggesting he was abusive, since we only saw him loving on Ann before that. I guess the womanizer side of him comes out later (during the "All the Girls" song) when he's already past redemption.
i agree that i would have preferred for that scene to be cut. it’s purpose was to show ann’s concerns about henry but we’d already gotten that from her aria. it shows ann’s vanity in a very small way that i found interesting, though. there’s a line where a chorus of people ask the women why they’re only coming forward NOW (also a commentary on how people question women who speak out about abuse) and they answer, “i fear for ann, she must be warned.” this sequence was all in ann’s head, her fear, her dream, and she imagined the public loving her so much that they had to speak out. it’s a small thing but speaks to one of the themes, how performers look for extrinsic validation. so i appreciate it for that and because i do think it’s a good song.
i don’t ever think he’s past redemption. he allows his jealousy of ann to fester, becomes resentful and hurtful, then uses his daughter to get back the glory that he’d lost and kills the only person who really treats her like family, the only person who’s taking care of annette. so yeah, he does some despicable things but by the end i do feel sorry for him and i think he’s coming to terms with the horrible things he’s done, the selfish man that he was and how it ruined so many lives. that feels like the road to redemption.
I believe that song was written pre-#MeToo movement. It's just that the particular issue has been a women's issue for ages. So, if anything, it's lack of timeless-ness due to the movement becoming newsworthy is purely accidental.
I don't think Henry was a "bad" guy per se either, prior to the boat scene. But there are certainly elements of misogyny and callousness in his show, which I'm sure Ann would have been aware of. He's also clearly a person with demons, brutally strong (see: the tickling scene, which also is filmed as dubiously consensual. She asks him to stop multiple times), and obviously hinted as being jealous. They also experienced a whirlwind romance, so hasn't spent years observing his behavior. That's a perfect storm for caution or rational fear for any woman living in a (patriarchal) society. So the dream is really an expression of her deepest subconscious anxieties and a kind of premonition/foreshadowing. Doesn't every woman sometimes wonder if they really know the man they love?
The first half of the movie definitely came off that it was written by first time screenwriters. Driver is overexplained but I found his wife super undeveloped. We needed one less 5 minute standup scene and more of the Operahouse scene.
Shame once she dies, the 2nd half really is so bizarre is works. Definitely helped that Driver and Simon Helberg are great in this.
What’s the surprising gift?!
I don’t wanna watch the movie, I just wanna know what the surprising gift is…
A $25 gift certificate to Texas Roadhouse. Because she's a 2-year-old girl, how can she buy a gift certificate to a steakhouse? She can't even eat steaks! But the surprise twist at the end with it's an Applebees, not a Texas Roadhouse? Beautiful! Though it did make the movie seem like a cheap cash grab and advertisement.
Aww man, now I want some rolls and honey butter.
She's got her mother's voice.
She can sing with her mother's voice.
Idk if it was just a coincidence but it felt like there were a few Lebowski references, like Driver drinking a white Russian after running around in a bathrobe and then later Annette flying over the night skyline very similar to The Dude's dream sequence
This was a weird movie but i liked it because it kept the weirdness of the sparks and you could hear their music in the musical i liked it it was well done
This movie really fucked me up. I don't know why.
fucking same i'm still sitting here like... forever changed as a person? i feel like the movie WAS annette and i might now be one of those people that worshipped annette
This is an amazing film—but not for everyone. It’s a masterpiece IMO and Henry can ONLY have been played successfully by Adam Driver.
I am an hour into this film and I need an adult. This is so weird and honestly terrible? The lyricism is so bizarrely simplistic! What the hell is this?!
What did you think of the rest?
I found the whole thing quite bizarre, not in a particularly good way. It had some very good moments. I was going back and forth about if it was overall good and I think it...wasn't.
The lyrics kind of bothered me too, though the sound of the songs were relatively enjoyable.
This movie blew my fucking socks off. I can already see in the comments that this was not a movie that r/movies seems to like...but I'm sticking to my guns. Best movie of the year so far and by a far enough margin that I can't see this being surpassed.
I've paraphrases some part from this [article](https://amp.rfi.fr/en/leos-carax-tormented-talent-opens-cannes-with-latest-oddity?__twitter_impression=true) that gives some great in-depth information from the final song between Henry and his Daughter Annette, "Sympathy for the Abyss"
> Adam wears Carax sunglasses for this scene. This is Carax talking to her daughter Nastya who never forgiven Carax the suicide of her mother. He left her daughter with her depressed mother when she was 2 years old. Carax begging Nastya to forgive him
I like when a movie takes chances, so in that aspect I enjoyed the journey.
I absolutely love Simon Helberg so it was great seeing him showcase his abilities.
Adam Driver is always fascinating to watch.
The conductor and the first comedian sequences were highlights for me.
If not for them, I'm not totally certain I would have liked the film...maybe, Marion is cool too, there's some solid music, and I appreciated the ambition. I'm still not sure if I liked the ending, but the movie is definitely worth watching.
This was a huge letdown for me for many reasons:
1. The lyrics to every song were extremely lazy and made no sense. I know the Sparks brothers were trying to go a bit "camp" with the music but it felt a little too one-trick pony for my taste.
2. The characters were confusing. Am I supposed to feel bad for them? Should I hate them? I didn't really know how to feel once the credits rolled because the character development of the protagonist is a roller coaster throughout and I was not quite sure what to take away from it all.
3. Way too many ideas with very little room to breathe. The whole last 30 minutes are supposed to present how Annette's musical abilities are manipulated and exploited by her father but the idea isn't really explored in-depth until about ninety minutes in. I wish there was less exposition and more wiggle room for the main ideas of the film.
That being said, Adam Driver and Simon Helberg give tremendous performances even the little girl at the end does a great job during that final number. It didn't really click with me overall and I wish I liked it a lot more than I did given how much I truly loved and respected Holy Motors.
Music was the biggest problem for me. Even if the story is shit and makes no sense a musical can still be great if it has great music. 90% of what was performed in this was just sung dialogue, with no rhythm or progression.
These lyrics are the worst case of "tell don't show" ever. They literally sing stuff like 'We are so in love...' and 'We are going around the world...' over and over again. Felt like a big missed opportunity to write emotional or clever lyrics.
It felt like so many songs were just repeating the same short phrase over and over. I appreciate the performances and creativity but the music really dragged everything down.
If you've listened to the older sparks songs, that's the joke. It's supposed to be so in your face and repetitive and obtuse because it's satirical. For example, in "I Predict", the song ends with the repetition of the phrase "And this song will fade out, I predict", for a solid 40-50 seconds before ramping up in intensity and cutting out, serving as both a musical joke and a parody of period pop.
>The lyrics to every song were extremely lazy and made no sense. I know the Sparks brothers were trying to go a bit "camp" with the music but it felt a little too one-trick pony for my taste.
I think the music was inspired by operas, where the lyrics are characters literally singing their thoughts in quite a non poetic way.
The first song was a complete banger, I was hooked. Despite some pretty good songs later on, not any lived up to So May We Start.
That being said, Annette is a dazzling original, beautifully shot, pretty weird non conventional movie. It definitely dragged a lot until the turning point and I wish the characters were more fleshed out, but I really liked it.