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Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

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Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

Old 10-30-08, 11:40 AM
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Saw this last night. I thought it was magnificent, but a bit flawed. The flaws don't take away from the movie though.

I saw it with my girlfriend and she said it was the first movie she'd ever seen where she felt as if she was going insane, as the movie progressed. She loved it.

I thought it was maybe 10-15 minutes too long but otherwise it was very, very good.
Old 11-22-08, 11:06 PM
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Adaptation made a lot more sense to me after someone explained to me what happened?

Anyone care to enlighten me about what I just saw in "Synecdoche, New York?"

Makes "Adaptation" and "Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind" look like obvious narratives.
Old 11-23-08, 12:26 PM
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A friend of mine saw this at a screening with Charlie Kaufman doing a Q&A, and everyone kept asking what specific images meant. Finally he got fed up and said, "Look, I'm not going to tell you what this movie means. Everything in it means something to me. Hopefully it means something to you, too. But I'm not telling you what it should mean to you, because you have to figure that out for yourself."

I only saw it once, but I took it as an unfolding of a subconscious thought process on screen, and loved it for that. I hope I see new things each time I watch it.
Old 11-24-08, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by jarofclay73 View Post
Adaptation made a lot more sense to me after someone explained to me what happened?

Anyone care to enlighten me about what I just saw in "Synecdoche, New York?"

Makes "Adaptation" and "Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind" look like obvious narratives.

beats the shit out of me, I'm still digesting this... I liked it, but I wouldn't quality it as one of the best of the year.
Old 11-24-08, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Giles View Post
beats the shit out of me, I'm still digesting this... I liked it, but I wouldn't quality it as one of the best of the year.
The whole house-for-sale gag may be the strangest and funniest bit I've seen in any movie this year.
Old 11-28-08, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by The Bus View Post
The whole house-for-sale gag may be the strangest and funniest bit I've seen in any movie this year.
This scene is the one that really sent me on a tailspin. It seemed like a realistic film up until Hazel buys a house that's continually on fire. Perhaps the dream-like (or nightmare-like) quality of the scene prepares us for the absurd events that follow.

I feel better now that many people do not really know what everything means. Even my friend who was with me, and who did not get any satisfaction from the movie, admitted that the performances were stellar.
Old 11-28-08, 04:08 PM
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If I'm not generally a fan of Kaufman's "work", I probably wouldn't like this, correct?
Old 11-28-08, 08:56 PM
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Only if the reason you didn't like his previous films was because you thought they were too conventional.
Old 11-28-08, 10:00 PM
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So I saw this tonight and I still don't know what to think. There is something genius in there, I just have to find it. I feel like I missed so much, even though I paid thorough attention throughout the film. There were some great parts and I really need to see it again. I suggest everyone go see the film, just for the experience.
Old 11-29-08, 08:26 AM
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I thought it was closest to what Suprmallet said: It's almost like every neuroses and horrible thought that PSH has after he gets hit with the sink knob is brought to life.

Spoiler:
Like: My ex-wife and I are so distant, I'd be closer to her if I was her maid.
Like: My emotions are so tightly wound, I have to apply my own tears via bottle.
Like: If only I could direct my life, maybe I'd understand what it all meant.
Old 11-29-08, 09:04 AM
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The best film of the year so far for me.
Old 11-29-08, 10:02 PM
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when does it wide?
Old 11-29-08, 10:44 PM
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Originally Posted by droidguy1119 View Post
I thought it was closest to what Suprmallet said: It's almost like every neuroses and horrible thought that PSH has after he gets hit with the sink knob is brought to life.

Spoiler:
Like: My ex-wife and I are so distant, I'd be closer to her if I was her maid.
Like: My emotions are so tightly wound, I have to apply my own tears via bottle.
Like: If only I could direct my life, maybe I'd understand what it all meant.
I did think that perhaps the turning point in the film was when he had that accident in the bathroom and maybe the rest of the film was just a dream (or nightmare) but I couldn't back that up with anything. Posting those quotes does help this theory. I was thinking that maybe he died after hitting his head but that would be so much like "The Sixth Sense."

Last edited by jarofclay73; 11-29-08 at 10:46 PM.
Old 11-29-08, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan View Post
If I'm not generally a fan of Kaufman's "work", I probably wouldn't like this, correct?
It's less loony, more depressing, and probably has more meaning.

Kaufman's movies (at least Malkovich, Adaptation and Synecdoche) are ones where I need to see them, but only once.
Old 12-07-08, 07:32 PM
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SO I saw this today. Glad I was able to see this in theaters. I really liked it and as of now will probably make the top 10 of the year for me. I have no idea what the film was about or what it was trying to say. However I was never bored and was often very emotionally moved. Even a few times to tears. I dont know if there is a way to "figure out what this movie means" or if it makes much sense as a story. However as a film that made an impact on me emotionally and maybe even on a deep human level I think this film succeeded .
Old 12-12-08, 11:13 PM
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Saw it today, hated it... this has done many times before and better... it had nothing profound to say, no energy, totally up its own ass, and it knows it... and hates itself for it. The whole thing is just an essay about itself. The layers don't make it review proof, or a masterwork. Toward the end, I felt scammed. 2 stars out of 5, for making me angry
Old 12-13-08, 05:26 AM
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Originally Posted by CloverClover View Post
Saw it today, hated it... this has done many times before and better... it had nothing profound to say, no energy, totally up its own ass, and it knows it... and hates itself for it. The whole thing is just an essay about itself. The layers don't make it review proof, or a masterwork. Toward the end, I felt scammed. 2 stars out of 5, for making me angry
2 stars for something you hated?
Old 12-13-08, 05:49 AM
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I guess to get a 1 star out of 5 rating the film maker would have to literally attack that guy with a bat or something.
Old 12-13-08, 03:15 PM
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Yeah, I hated it, I wanted to forget it as soon as I saw it... no movie I can remember effected me like this, it made me feel angry and scammed, so to be able to have that effect I gave it an extra star. Still I am willing to review my visceral response, especially since looking back on it, I remember something like an eternal mushroom trip. It winds tighter and tighter, but expands further and further, and of course ends with

Spoiler:
his apocalypse


of course the movie encompasses and anticipates my kind of response, and cries about that too, like negative and positive reviews are saying the same thing. I don't think that is genius though, I think it is cowardly, folding back enough layers, despite spitting in its own face, the film thinks very highly of itself, that's when I rejected it and found it sadistic.

Spoiler:

in the end he says he was all the characters all along, but that was obvious the entire time, it was one big conversation with himself, they all talked in the same voice, none of the scenes had real characters, no character development, no actual scenes, it is entirely empty -- not a mushroom trip, but a diary written by someone on 'shrooms, a waste of time, of $30 million budget... one of the emptiest films you'll see... I don't change my review from hate to love, I don't feel anything toward it anymore, but I won't bother to hate it because I want to hold onto my sanity

Last edited by CloverClover; 12-13-08 at 03:31 PM.
Old 03-12-09, 01:40 AM
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Re: Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

HOLY SHIT. Wow. Anyone who hates this movie , hates Art. I'm not sure how great it is but jesus that was one hell of a ride. I think I haven't loved a movie this much since Fight Club. Blown away, is all I can say really, just wow.
Old 03-12-09, 02:36 AM
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Re: Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

^ or they just hate films that are, ya'know, pretentious.
Old 03-12-09, 08:41 AM
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Re: Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

Wanted to love this movie but was disappointed. Having an unlikeable protagonist didn't help.
Old 03-12-09, 04:10 PM
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Re: Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

The basic premise is really mind-blowing, but I couldn't enjoy the depressing mood of the whole film. I was just a bit confused at the end. Whose voice was coming through the earpiece and why was she giving instructions to Caden?

And another thing I'm not clear on..

Spoiler:
The elaborate set and all the actors/crew, was that real or just in his mind? If it was supposed to be real I don't know where he got enough money to support those people for all those years or why they would continue to participate in his insanity.
Old 03-12-09, 05:12 PM
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Re: Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

Originally Posted by taa455 View Post
The basic premise is really mind-blowing, but I couldn't enjoy the depressing mood of the whole film. I was just a bit confused at the end. Whose voice was coming through the earpiece and why was she giving instructions to Caden?

And another thing I'm not clear on..

Spoiler:
The elaborate set and all the actors/crew, was that real or just in his mind? If it was supposed to be real I don't know where he got enough money to support those people for all those years or why they would continue to participate in his insanity.
As to your spoiler question...the MacArthur Grant was the source of the funding for his project.

I believe the voice in his ear by the end was the woman he originally hired to play the maid, but who he then wound up switching roles with.
Old 03-12-09, 05:31 PM
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Re: Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)

I just watched this last night and I'm not sure what the hell I think of it.
Spoiler:
The voice was definitely Dianne Wiest's. As soon as she volunteered to take over for him it seemed like he then became a spectator to that 'personality' or whatever psychosis you want to call the different characters.
I think. It's hard to say absolutely anything with any certainty about anything in this film.

I think I liked it, but it certainly didn't work as a rental given how many more times I'd like to watch bits and pieces. My main issue with the film is that
Spoiler:
Until they went into the burning house it was somewhat understandable, or at least identifiable. It set an expectation that I should be trying to follow what the hell was going on for long enough that I kept trying to piece together what was happening literally, when only by just about the very end (when he got the earpiece, actually) did I realize I should have been just watching it as an experience. I wish I could go back without any prejudices that I have now from watching it and try not to piece together pieces that weren't meant to be combined.

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