Kind of a drag

I’m telling anyone who’ll listen that Kinds of Kindness is a five star masterpiece because I’ll be damned if I’m the only one who has to suffer through this movie.

I’ve always liked the movies of Yorgos Lanthimos going back to Dogtooth but his cinema of cruelty has finally reached peak nonsense.

When I was a young lad my mother told me ‘If you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.’

I used to think that was a wise axiom and my mom was some kind of prophet, like she made it up. Later when I grew up I realized it was a stock phrase that every adult said, like they heard it in church or some shit.

So here’s what I have to say that’s kind about Kinds of Kindness. The film runs 164-minutes yet when it ended I was expecting another two episodes. It felt like I’d been sitting in the dark for ninety minutes. In other words even when he makes a bomb Yorgos has a touch that makes the images flow in a quietly efficient manner.

There are three episodes that feature the same core actors – Emma Stone, Willem Dafoe, Mamoudou Athie, Margaret Qualley, Hong Chau, Jesse Plemons, a few others – acting out absurd scenarios.

There are even a few laughs mostly at the expense of existential suffering and car crashes. Yorgos has invented a universe where air bags don’t exist.

Kinds of Kindness may be the ultimate carte blanche project where a director’s good will gives him the right to present his worst ideas with the build up reserved for A-list helmers.

Never has so much lurid sex or brilliant concepts been wasted on thinly thought out scenarios.

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