In LUCY IN THE SKY, Natalie Portman plays Lucy Cola, a strong woman whose determination and drive as an astronaut take her to space, where she's deeply moved by the transcendent experience of seeing her life from afar. Back home as Lucy's world suddenly feels too small, her connection with reality slowly unravels.Written by
Fox Searchlight Pictures
Zazie Beetz also stars in Joker, released the same day as this film. See more »
At 44 minutes, when Lucy is describing the wonder of the universe to her husband, she explains how humanity forgets, that every day, twice a day, the earth goes around the sun. See more »
The Summer Day, by Mary Oliver. Who made the world? Who made the swan, and the black bear? Who made the grasshopper? This grasshopper, I mean - the one who has flung herself out of the grass, the one who is eating sugar out of my hand, who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down - who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes. Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face. Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away. I don't know exactly what a ...
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Deep character studies can make fantastic films if you have a great performance behind the character. Movies about post-traumatic stress can add a level of drama that a lot of films simply can't. In the case of Lucy in the Sky, this is a film that deals with both for the entire duration. So, what went wrong here? This movie is proof that not every true story will make a worthwhile feature film. This is one of the worst films of the year.
Following Lucy (Natalie Portman) as she arrives back on Earth after a mission in space, a combination of wishing to go back and not wanting the life she original had begins to take her over. Not only does could that set-up lend itself to a fascinating character study, but I would have preferred it to not be a true story. As I said, this story doesn't have enough depth to lend itself to a full feature film. After setting up where this character has been and where she is now, Lucy in the Sky has nowhere to go.
Natalie Portman is completely committed to this character and is easily the biggest saving grace of this film. On top of her great performance, there is a very unique way this film is presented. With aspect ration constantly changing throughout the film, it felt like a neat little experiment to have the shape of the screen feel like it was how Lucy was feeling in the moment. Sadly, both of these elements deserved a better film to be a part of. Never once I feel that this was a great character being explored, but rather just a great character, not being explored enough, placed in a terrible film.
I could try to find positives in the fact that the space sequences are beautiful to look at in terms of visual effects, but those sequences end after the first five minutes. The addition of performers like Jon Hamm or Zazie Beetz should normally feel like an elevation, but they're ultimately underused. The climax of this film felt like it should have taken place toward the middle of the movie, because it wasn't all that exciting and like the rest of the movie, pretty much goes nowhere and makes you question what the point of this movie even was.
I'm not one who usually bashed on a film, because I like to see the good in most movies, but it's very difficult when a director like Noah Hawley, who I have loved on many television projects, chooses a poor first outing for his feature film debut. After watching this film at the Toronto International Film Festival, it became the first film that I've ever seen at a festival that I straight-up disliked. There are saving graces when it comes to Natalie Portman, the visual presentation, and even the direction by Noah Hawley, in terms of getting great performances out of everyone, but this is one of the weakest stories that I've seen on the big screen in years.
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