Art wouldn’t usually be a topic for a film that would usually interest me however the trailer for Big Eyes had me immediately intrigued. This was probably a result of the two leads attached to this film, Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz, both of which usually entertain me. Whilst both actors have a good track record with me the same can’t be said for the director, Tim Burton, who sometimes I appreciate and others not so much. So with all of these aspects in the mix how did Big Eyes fare?
Well generally speaking Big Eyes is a good movie, it’s very watchable however it most certainly comes with its flaws. Probably the biggest issue I had with the film was that despite this being a true story I never believed it, I felt like I was watching a story dreamt up in Burton’s mind. I know some will say that it is just such a remarkable story that it seems unbelievable, but for me it wasn’t the story itself it was just how it was conveyed. Much of it felt exaggerated and animated. As much as I love Christoph Waltz as an actor I felt he was miscast here or at least he over did himself in this role. Of course I can’t comment on how similar he was to the real life figure but just at times throughout the film I felt like he was portrayed almost as a pantomime villain which I didn’t think was appropriate in certain scenes. Another element which didn’t help with creating a reality to the film was the narration, not only did the character narrating seem quite pointless but it just increased the feeling that this was fictitious story. The film has interesting pacing as well, at times I was completely engaged in the events taking place and then during other sections I was dying for the movie to end. This just told me that I wasn’t completely invested in the story or characters and that I needed something exciting on screen to engage me.
Anyway despite those flaws I did enjoy most of the film. I thought Amy Adams (Margaret Keane) was brilliant in this movie. Adams brought the reality to this story that Waltz didn’t, she was able to convey emotions with nothing more than a look and during several points of the film you could really sympathise with her. The film has some comedic elements throughout which are nice touches but at the same time sometimes the humour is misplaced and compromises some scenes. The film has some unexpected turns and developments which also were a treat, they certainly drew me back into the story as my attention was flagging.
Big Eyes whilst watchable for the most part is largely forgettable. It certainly doesn’t stand out amongst the other biopics this year. Fans of this artist or maybe the story in real life will enjoy this film but for the everyday movie goer there isn’t much substance to the movie. Thankfully Amy Adams puts in a wonderful performance as the lead actress here and her performance is worth the price of admission as she brings her part of this story to life very well.
BIGGEST FLAW – It seemed too animated, meaning I didn’t believe it
BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT – Amy Adams performance
Rating – 6.5/10