I struggled through Greenberg last night, and the whole time I kept thinking ‘does the world really need this?’ Another unlikeable protagonist. Another stop-start romance. Another unresolved ending.
It’s not that it was bad, really. The dialogue was precise. The acting was realistic. Every scene went on precisely as long as it should have.
But what was the point? Baumbach has shown us all of this before. People who are unpleasant often hate themselves for being unpleasant. Yes, Noah, we have absorbed this now.
As I find myself watching fewer and fewer movies, I’m becoming convinced that filmmakers should approach each movie like it’s a scientific publication. ‘What am I adding to the literature’, they should ask. I feel like this is one thing that action movie directors, for one, do really well. ‘What if the dinosaur terrorizing the city was bigger?’ they ask. Or, ‘What if the vampires could come out during the day?’
Sure, action movies are always playing the same tune, but at least they’re using different instruments. Movies like Greenberg are just lipsyncing.