Connect with us

Bollywood News

Beautiful Boy Is Deeply Flawed But Must Be Watched

Subhash K . Jha

Published

on


Beautiful  Boy(Amazon)

Starring Steve Carell, Timothy Chalamet

Directed  by Felix Van Groeningen

Rating: ***(3 stars)

There  is  so  much that this  heartshattering drama  about a distraught father coping with his son’s drug addiction, could  have done. Instead  Beautiful Boy plays it safe.  It casts beautiful-boy Timothee Chalamet as Nic Sheff, a teenager trying to shrug off  his addiction  even as he sinks lower and lower into the abyss of drug abuse.

Chalamet takes care of all the sympathy that the  plot  needs  to muster  for us to  go along with his  nervewracking  journey into selfdestruction. The  film  is based on Nic Sheff’s account Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines  as well as his father David Sheff’sBeautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction,so we  ought to have been provided  with a spectral  double  view  of  a family tragedy that unfolds over a period of several years during which time the young addict’s life comes apart at  the seams.

Soon, as I  watched the honest but  not memorable film, I realized this is not Nic’s  story. It is his father’s story of coping with  a crisis  of  unimaginable  proportions as  his family life falls apart. How much  of himself can David Sheff give to his son’s problem before giving up the fight? The  film,in its own somnolent style, shows us the threshold of  parental patience. And  Steve Carrell is fine if not memorable, as  the  father. This is  more his story than his son’s.

It’s easier  to follow the father’s ‘feud’-steps  as he moves  further  and further away from his son’s emotional  axis. There are  sequences that  are designed to bring us close to tears.But we never gte that close to the characters  to feel their  pain.  The emotional  responses  never emerge organically from the  plot characters. Carrell and Chalamet playing the  estranged father-son routine  seem to say all the right things to each other with just the right pauses and  punctuations. It’s almost like watching them  do a translation  of  the real emotions in digestible terms.

I missed a  sense  of unrehearsed  spontaneity in the  dialogues  . In addition, the unhurried pace  and the repetitive  mode of unveiling the  inherently-dramatic  dysfunctionalism(drug addict comes home,disappears, comes  home…) makes Beautiful Boy more remarkable for what  it  sets out to  say rather than the way it says  it.

Not that  the  film is  without its moments.  In some  sequences we see Nic’s naked anguish as  he stares  blankly into his own future. Chalamet, so effective as a  man-boy discovering gay love in Call Me By Your Name  is  deeply effective  though  not as impact-driven as  Lucas Hedges in  Ben Is Back , that  other recent  more powerful drama  of a parent coping with the son’s drug addiction.

Beautiful Boy  is  riddled with  problems, none of which are related  to the  protagonist’s drug addiction. It jumps  back and forth  impatiently creating a breach between the characters  , their problems and our empathy for them. But the background score is  magnificent. The narrative uses  insistent  pounding rock sounds to  echo Nic’s psyche and  settles down for a quieter musical statement   at the end when all options for redemption are exhausted.

So, to be honest, are we.

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Must Read

Bollywood News4 hours ago

Adnan Sami: “My Blood Boils Every Time My Nationality Is Questioned”

On  the  August  15 when Independent India turned 72, Adnan  Sami also celebrated  his birthday. However  trolls from Pakistan tried to rain on...

Bollywood News5 hours ago

Khayyam The Zero-Compromise Composing Genius Is No More

 Khayyam  blossomed  into a popular  music-provider  very late in his career. For too long he remained sidelined by a sense...

Bollywood News5 hours ago

Lata Mangeshkar Speaks On The Genius Of Khayyam

 There  is much reason  for   the Nightingale Lata Mangeshkar  to mourn the  passing forth  of  the  peerless  composer  Khayyam. “Among the many...

Lata Mangeshkars Interview With Subhash K Jha Lata Mangeshkars Interview With Subhash K Jha
Bollywood News1 day ago

On World Photgraphy Day Lata Mangeshkar On Her Secret Passion

Bet you didn’t  know this.But Lata Mangeshkar who is  legendary for her singing , is  an outstanding photographer.In fact there were  exhibitions  of...

Salman khan with a bike Salman khan with a bike
Bollywood News1 day ago

Salman Khan To Start Shooting For Inshallah On August 21

Nonsensical reports  suggesting that  the  shooting of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s  new opus Inshallah has been delayed , can now be put to rest.  It...

Lata Mangeshkar Birthday Lata Mangeshkar Birthday
Entertainment3 days ago

“Why Should Dhoni Retire When I Haven’t?” India’s Greatest Artiste Lata Mangeshkar Questions

The peerless Lata Mangeshkar who is now  approaching 90 says artistes  never  retire.  “It  is not  something one switches on  or off. If...

Entertainment3 days ago

Ajay Devgan Preps For Football Legend’s Role

 This month  , the  very adventurous Ajay Devgan will now  plunge into his most difficult role since Chandrashekhar Azad  in Amit(Badhai Ho) Sharma’s  film on Syed Abdul Rahim, said to...

Entertainment3 days ago

Ooooh, Those Unique Lovemaking Scenes

  Unique love scenes in films  are like scoops of eternity…never to be lost. Never to be collected in  a ...

Adivi Sesh Adivi Sesh
Entertainment3 days ago

Adivi Sesh: “We Never Expected Evaru Would Open So Well”

Adivi   Shesh  is  in seventh heaven….going on eighth.  His  new  film Evaru which opened  on August 15 has  garnered  huge appreciative audiences....

Entertainment3 days ago

Deepika–Salman Unlikely To Come Together

 We’ve  all been waiting to see  Deepika Padukone team  up with Salman Khan for a very  long time. It looks  like...

Parineeti Chopra Parineeti Chopra
Entertainment5 days ago

Parineeti Chopra No Booze, Please

Parineeti Chopra is now in London  shooting for  the  Hindi remake of  a very dark brooding intense  British  drama The Girl...

Entertainment5 days ago

Sujeeth: “I Am Too Small To Be Compared With Rajamouli Sir”

 The painfully  young Saaho director Sujeeth is not scared of  comparisons  with Baahubali. “I understand  Prabhas’ fans want to see a film that will equal Baahubali in...

Akshay Kumar Akshay Kumar
Entertainment5 days ago

Akshay Kumar Finds His Way Into A Women’s Film

Even when Bollywood makes movies  about  powerful women they need  the male presence  to bolster the  film’s boxoffice  prospects. That’s a sad fact....

Farhan Akhtar Farhan Akhtar
Entertainment5 days ago

Farhan Akhtar Sees A Goldmine In Telugu Cinema

Farhan Akhtar and  his  business partner Ritesh Sidhvani seem  to have  hit on a goldmine,  literally.After making more money  on...

Featured5 days ago

Mission Mangal Good To Go But Not Good Enough

Mission Mangal Starring  Vidya Balan, Tapsee Pannu, Akshay Kumar, Sonakshi Sinha,Nithya Manen, Kriti Kulhari Directed  by Jagat Shakti Rating:  ** ½ (two and a  half stars)  Inspiring,yes. But  in an uncomfortably perspiring  way. Mission Mangal, based...

Entertainment6 days ago

Where Have All The Sisters Gone?

 There  was  a time  when the Sister  was an important,  integral  almost  mandatory part  of Hindi commercial cinema. Blockbuster films...

Featured6 days ago

Batla House Movie Review: It Pierces A Slice Of Horrific History

Batla House Starring  John Abraham, Mrunal Thakur Directed  by Nikhil Advani Rating: *****(5 stars)  There is a strong  storm brewing in our deeply polarized  society...

Bollywood News6 days ago

My Favourite Patriotic Song & Film: Bollywood Gets Sentimental On Independence Day

Ustad Amjad Ali Khan:  “Lataji’s Ae mere watan ke logon is my favourite patriotic song.” Shabana Azmi: “Kar chale him...

Bollywood News6 days ago

12 Films That Reformed Mindsets

Films were always meant to change  the way we look at life. Alas,they seldom do that. Busy as they are trying to desperately entertain us,movies forget their...

Entertainment6 days ago

Evaru Is A Better Adaptation Of The Invisible Guest Than Badla

Evaru(Telugu) Starring  Adivi Sesh, Regina Cassandra, Naveen Andrews Directed  by  Venkat Ramji Rating: ****(4 Stars) No  matter how  cynical you are about suspense  thrillers, the end-twist...

Entertainment7 days ago

Will Aamir Khan Rescue Imran Khan’s Career?

It doesn’t take great  powers  of deduction  to  figure out that Imran Khan who once was king in in Jaane Tu…YaJaane Na is now out of...

Entertainment7 days ago

Kartik Aryan Flies To Bangkok To Be With Sara Ali Khan On Her Birthday

Just what  are Sara Ali Khan and  Kartik Aryan  trying to  show to the world by   being seen together   all over  the...

नम्रता-शिरोडकर नम्रता-शिरोडकर
Entertainment7 days ago

Namrata Shirodkar,“Sitara Is A full-On Star”

Mahesh Babu and his wife  Namrata Shirodkar’s 7-year old daughter   Sitara is breaking the internet with her dance performance to her father’s song Paala pitta from  the film  Maharshi. Proud  mother  Namrata just...

Sanjay Leela Bhansali Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Bollywood News1 week ago

The National Award For Music Composition Is Very Precious To Me,” Sanjay Leela Bhansali Revives Era Of Filmmaker-Composer

When Sanjay Leela Bhansali heard the news that he had been awarded the National award for best music  composer  for...

Entertainment1 week ago

Move A foot To Ban Mika From All Indian Recordings After his Karachi Performance

 In a shocking disregard  for  public sentiments singer Mika Singh trouped  off  too Karachi  with his band and performed at  the wedding...

Prabhas Prabhas
Entertainment1 week ago

Prabhas Wants To Avoid Media

Telugu superstar Prabhas,  like Tamil cinema’s Rajinikant, Ajith and  Vijay, is  not happy with  doing  media interaction to promote   his film. Given a  choice Prabhas would  rather...

Entertainment1 week ago

Dream Girl Proves Ayushmann Khurrana Is Not Afraid To Take The Leap

Dream  Girl was the  epithet  reserved for  the one and only Hema  Malini. It seems we now have a new Dream Girl. Ayushmann Khurrana has ...

Honey Singh Honey Singh
Entertainment1 week ago

Non-bailable arrest Warrant Against Honey Singh

Yo Yo!!  Does  anyone remember  Honey Singh? He took the charts by storm  some years  ago with his provocative misogynistic ...

Entertainment1 week ago

Uri Owes Its Debt To Farhan Akhtar

Farhan Akhtar inadvertently proved a  source of inspiration for  Aditya Dhar’s Uri. Recounting  the  sequence  of events Aditya says, “I was doing research  on  what makes Indian...

Entertainment1 week ago

Amit Sharma “My Next After Badhaai Ho Is A Much Bigger Challenge.”

Badhai Ho, Amit. Your film has won two  National awards. Amit is still in state  of  disbelief. “When the National awards were announced...

Entertainment1 week ago

Saaho Trailer Leaves Many Questions Unanswered…

 Hopefully, the answers would be provided on August 30 when  the film releases. But for now the  long-awaited trailer   that...

Bollywood News1 week ago

Rahul Rawail Gets Hatemail From Mammootty Fans

 The Southern  film industry is  known to be fanatical  about  its  actors. Hero-worship  has  gone  to  another level with Malayali fans  of ...

Sonakshi, Siddharth Malhotra Sonakshi, Siddharth Malhotra
Bollywood News1 week ago

Siddharth Malhotra Stuck In Kargil

The Jabariya Jodi has separated.  The lead pair from the just-released  film is shooting in  different parts of the world. While Parineeti Chopra is  shooting...

John Abraham John Abraham
Entertainment1 week ago

“John Had To Learn Arabic For Batla House,” Nikhil Advani Describes The Journey

Prolific filmmaker Nikhil Advani is  going through the best phase  of his career. His  Batla House looks as politically intense as  Anubhav Sinha’s  recently  released Article  15 and tackles an...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

Nagarjuna’s New Avatar Is As Naughty As It Can Get

Manmadhudu 2 (Telugu) Starring Nagarjuna, Rakul Preet Singh, Lakshmi Directed  by Rahul Ravindran Rating: ****(4stars) At  60, Nagarjuna preserves a  boyish charm that  renders itself  with  great effectiveness in...

Mahesh Babu Mahesh Babu
Entertainment2 weeks ago

Mahesh Babu: “I Don’t Feel 44”

Telugu superstar  Mahesh Babu  who turns 44   on  August 8  looks 23. Compliment him on his  eternally youthful  appearance  and he  smiles,...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

Mahesh Babu‘s Film Will Be The Last Shot In Kashmir For A While

You could say it   got away  in the nick of time. Mahesh  Babu’s next  project  Sarileru Neekevvaru was  shot in  July in Kashmir. “We...

Jabariya Jodi Jabariya Jodi
Movie Reviews2 weeks ago

Jabariya Jodi Gets It Right

Jabariya Jodi: Movie Review Starring Siddharth Malhotra, Parineeti Chopra Directed by Prashant Singh Rating: ****(4 stars) For a  film that has  not been shot Bihar/Patna at all, Jabariya Jodi gets  the...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

“It Was Sridevi’s Wish That I Produce A Tamil Film,” Says Boney Emotionally

 Boney Kapoor has extremely ambivalent  feelings about his  first Tamil production Nerkonda Paarvai , a remake  of the harditting Hindi film Pink which opens in the coming week. Says  Boney emotionally, “While ...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

The Ones Who Retired Even Before Starting Out

Zaira Wasim’s premature adieu has sent shock waves across  the  Hindi film industry.  There are those who think she  was too...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

7 Facts About Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Inshallah You Don’t Know

1.     Alia Bhatt and Salman Khan do not play  an age-challenged  couple. If you are looking for a Lolita-unplugged  kind of remix about a greying man...

Ayushmann Khurana Ayushmann Khurana
Entertainment2 weeks ago

Ayushmann Is Happy To Be Doing Relevant Films

Ayushmann Khurrana is  constantly looking for scripts that challenge him. With Article 15, Anubhav Sinha’s  stunning disturbing  exposition  on  the notorious ...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

An Institution Falls: J Om Prakash No More

 To  anyone who  refers  to   the   iconic  producer-director J Om Prakash  as Hrithik  Roshan’s meternal grandfather  ,one can only say, ignorance  is  bliss.  J...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

Deepika No Concession For Working With Ranveer

 Everyone connected with the mega-sportsflick  ’83 knows the  focus  of interest  in the film is cricket legend KapilDev and his triumph at...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

Sandeep Vanga On His Next Film

Mired  in controversy  Sandeep Vanga’s  Kabir Singh has become a raging success, ‘raging’ being the  key word. “Very  frankly I knew the Hindi version would...

Madhavan Madhavan
Entertainment2 weeks ago

Madhavan Is Lost In Space

 It is the  time for  true heroes  to come forward on screen .After mathematician Anand Kumar it’s rocket scientistNambi Narayanan who  gave his life to...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

Sadak 2 Moves Out Of Kashmir, Alia Confirms

After  the Indian govrnment’s  announcement  of  Article 370  being repealed , there are  reports  of Bollywood running scared  from Kashmir....

Akshay Kumar Akshay Kumar
Entertainment2 weeks ago

No Akshay Kumar In Bhool Bhulaiya 2

 While Kartik  Aryan  is happily lapping up all the  attention for bagging the sequel to  2007’s successful  horror comedy  Bhoola Bhulaiya , additional  reports...

Salman Khan and Suraj Pancholi Salman Khan and Suraj Pancholi
Entertainment2 weeks ago

Sooraj Pancholi’s Career Stalled Again, Salman Pulls The Plug

 Things  aren’t going well for the Pancholi parivaar. While papa Aditya Pancholi is grappling with  serious legal issues involving rape and  extortion, son Sooraj’s  career ...

Entertainment2 weeks ago

Yes, Govinda Was Offered Avatar,” A Co-Star Reveals All

While the memes and jokes  about Govinda’s  elevated Hollywood aspirations have  not died down the  actor stands by his  words...

Advertisement

Most Popular