Buckle up because The Goldfinch is quite the Tour de France. Many times, it is unclear where the story is heading, but curiosity holds the viewers attention. Beginning in our protagonist, Theo’s, dream, we are surrounded by ruble, dust, and many questions. The film bounces between different stages of Theo’s life – beginning in New York, a stint in Las Vegas, and adulthood.
The cast, particularly twelve year-old Oakes Fegley, is incredibly impressive. Nicole Kidman tends to overshadow in the scenes she is in, but the rest of the well-known cast performs well in their supporting roles. There are many well thought out characters in the film and each relationship Theo builds serves a purpose. The film is more of a slow burn than a gut punch which felt necessary given the nearly two and a half hour runtime.
Based on the Pulitzer Prize book by the same title, the film spends more time focused on each of Theo’s life phases. The book spends more time delving into his addiction and ending violence. Watching the movie, the drugs and violence are touched on enough and any more would have been overkill. However, as always, the book does a better job with details and emotion.
The film is artsy enough to possibly win a Golden Globe, but not enough that you feel like you need to be medicated going in to “get” it. My guest, Mandy, shares, “Many times I thought it had to be the end but then it would catch me. It was really sweet. It had a good ending which was important, otherwise [the way it was going] it could have made me depressed.”
Movie times: click here
Run Time: 2 hours and 29 minutes
Directors: John Crowley
Actors: Oakes Fegley, Ansel Elgort, Nicole Kidman
Rating: Rated R for drug use and language
Fun Fact: Editor Kelley Dixon’s first theatrical film. By the time of production, she has been nominated for nine Emmy Awards, including one win for her work on Breaking Bad (2008)