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I believe that one common goal of every film is to keep your interest from beginning to end. A movie can make you cry, laugh, think, cringe, fear, whatever… But if it stops doing anything, it has failed. Yeah, I wasn’t feeling this one. I’m sure there’s an audience for it, but I feel that its thinly veiled premise overstays its welcome close to the first hour in. It does aim to wrap up its premise by the end, but there’s a long lull to get through to get there.
Don’t Look Up (2021) was written and directed by Adam McKay. A PhD student, Kate Dibiasky (Jennifer Lawrence) and her professor, astronomer Dr. Randall Mindy (Leonardo DiCaprio) discover a comet in a direct collision course towards Earth. Joined by NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office head Dr. Teddy Oglethorpe (Rob Morgan), they try to alert the White House. Unfortunately, President Orlean (Meryl Streep) and her son, Chief of Staff Jason (Jonah Hill) diminish their claims. Kate and Randall will try to get the public’s attention by going onto popular talk show The Daily Rip where hosts Brie (Cate Blanchett) and Jack (Tyler Perry) will be unable to take them seriously.
Perhaps it’s just my sense of humour might be too selective, but once you catch on to the premise I feel it just becomes repetitive. Yes, I get it’s a parody and we’re supposed to laugh along as science ends up taking a back seat to celebrity scandal and political interest. But it does feel a like a very thinly veiled premise enough for a short sketch that repeats itself several times too many. Politicians, lobbyists, media figures, pop stars, tech moguls are all caricatures of themselves. There’s an obvious parody of right wing political rallies that just feels a little too much on the nose. I do get what the movie is saying because it screams it out, I just don’t think it ever finds its comedic ground.
The movie is never particularly offensive to the characters it chooses to ridicule, but I don’t feel it ever does justice to the scientific community either. More so, it pushes the same premise over and over again until it goes for a conclusion. To be fair, it does wrap up its premise but the long road just stalls the film too long. I had to stop and restart this film over three days to get past the lull between the beginning and the end. Now due to its stellar cast, I know this film might resonate with a lot of movie fans of the performers but it falls quite flat for me.
Not recommended. Some casual audiences might still enjoy a watch given its star-packed cast. I found the premise was a very transparent and overdone parody. It might’ve worked in a short sketch format but not a full length feature. It feels dull and overstays its welcome shortly after its start, basically falling on the same flat note repeatedly until it decides to wrap up. It does aim for some obvious comedy beats, but I feel it depends on its star power too much. Then again, your experience might differ that mine. I just don’t think it’s worth a watch given its runtime.
That will do for now.