‘Beautiful Boy’ is too safe for a drug abuse film

‘Beautiful Boy’ is too safe for a drug abuse film

Dial again the wonder, boys.

The true story of a father coping with his son’s methamphetamine habit, “Stunning Boy” appears to take its title much less from the John Lennon tune than its picturesque California setting.

For each scene displaying a life destroyed by medicine, there’s one other happy-go-lucky chat set in probably the most attractive kitchen you’ve ever laid eyes on. Why concentrate on ache when you’ll be able to gawk at a tile backsplash?

Certain, an 18-year-old meth addict can develop up in an HGTV dream home, however it’s the filmmakers’ job to make that abode match the traumatic circumstances surrounding it. They haven’t. Belgian director Felix Van Groeningen has delivered too safe a film, which fights towards two terrific actors bravely baring their souls.

Steve Carell performs David Sheff, a freelance journalist and doting dad to 3 children, together with teenage Nic (Timothée Chalamet), an aspiring author. The film jumps forwards and backwards by way of time as we watch Nic as an affectionate tyke, who can barely go two seconds with out hugging his dad, juxtaposed with a turbulent teenage insurgent whose thoughts has been warped by crystal meth. The distinction, which Chalamet performs with nice vulnerability, is heart-wrenching.

The film stays admirably true to the lives its primarily based on, by displaying the various, many occasions Nic relapses. “Relapse is a part of restoration” is mentioned a few occasions, and Nic’s story sadly follows that rule. Simply while you assume his life is on observe, he has a second of weak spot and is again at sq. one, stealing his toddler brother’s financial savings and stumbling across the streets of San Francisco. The identical scenario performs out time and again, straining the power of his father and stepmother (a sturdy, however heat Maura Tierney) to care. Some moviegoers gained’t just like the unsure remaining scene, however it’s spot on.

So is Carell. I lastly got here round to the actor doing severe roles throughout final yr’s “Final Flag Flying,” when he shed all of the comedian enormity of Michael Scott and Evan Baxter and performed a Vietnam veteran burying his son. Carell’s area of interest proper now isn’t awkward anchormen, however mother and father going by way of hell.

He makes a plausible dad to the equally transferring Chalamet, who writhes, screams and cries, however by no means showboats. The proper pair is higher than this film.


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