Thursday, March 6, 2008

Requiem for a Dream (2000)

Darren Aronofsky's disturbing masterpiece Requiem for a Dream is a chillingly graphic film that makes you wonder how anyone could let themselves become an addict. The film opens up with Harry Goldfarb (Jared Leto) stealing his mother's television to pawn for heroin money, they give you the impression that this is a common occurrence. Along with Harry is his friend and fellow addict Tyrone (Marlon Wayans). While Harry is the brain of the operation, Tyrone is the one who puts the plan into effect. There is also Harry's girlfriend Marian, played wonderfully by Jennifer Connelly, who seems to have the most level head of the three but is drawn in by the junk as well. At first the three of them really seem to be making it work. Harry and Tyrone are distributing and making good money, while Marian is designing dresses and clothing so that she can set up a clothing store. Unfortunately, a rival soon kills their connection and Tyrone ends up in jail and thus thrusts them back to the poorhouse. As you view the film you just sit and watch as the three of them circle down the drain and throw their lives into a living Hell where the only thing that can pull them up is another fix. In the meantime Harry's mother Sara (Ellen Burstyn) has found out that she has won a contest and is going to be competing on television. It is very important to Sara to fit into an old red dress she has that her late husband was very fond of, so she goes to a doctor to get diet pills. Unfortunately the only thing that the doctor cares about is getting paid, so he gives her no information about the pills that she is taking and soon she becomes strung out on speed. Requiem for a Dream is a very harsh, very graphic, very disturbing film. It is very hard to watch, but it is most certainly a masterpiece. Ellen Burstyn's performance ranks up there with the best all time, and the music by the Krono's Quartet is magnificent. A definite must see film for anyone that can stomach it. Overall 4.0/4 Stars Grade = A

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