Is Downsizing a big deal?
With its A-list cast and creative concept, Downsizing could be the most ambitious effort yet from the writer/director, Alexander Payne (The Descendants & Sideways). But is it any good?
The premise is big and bold. Norwegian scientists have developed a medical procedure commonly known as ‘Downsizing’, which sees humans shrunk into pocket-sized versions of themselves.
The operation is promoted as a way of helping the world’s overpopulation. Also, since the cost of living at that size is dramatically reduced, money goes a lot further, allowing those that undergo the operation to live like multi-millionaires for just a fraction of the price.
Paul Safranek (Matt Damon) and his wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig) are sold on the promise of a better life. The couple are struggling financially and downsizing could be the answer to their problems.
Unfortunately, after Paul undergoes the irreversible Downsizing, his wife bails on the procedure at the last minute. Furthermore, she takes all the money in the divorce, meaning Paul must return to living in a small apartment and working a menial job, whilst dealing with the other issues that come with being just 5-inches-tall.
Alexander Payn has created a mixed bag of films throughout his career – including the critically acclaimed About Schmidt and the panned I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry. Downsizing as a whole is as uneven as the filmmakers’ past work. The second half of the movie particularly has a different tone. Most noticeably the visual gags of seeing normal sized items through the eyes of tiny people are pretty much entirely abandoned. It’s a shame as that is where the most fun is had.
Overall, there are moments of genius which are sadly dwarfed by the rather dull storyline.
Mikey Clarke [youtube id=”UCrBICYM0yM” width=”600″ height=”350″]
Genre: Comedy & Drama
Running Time: 2hrs 15mins
Written/Directed by: Alexander Payne
Cast: Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau, Udo Kier, Jason Sudeikis, Neil Patrick Harris & Laura Dern
See Downsizing and much more at Showcase Cinema, Peterborough. Visit www.showcasecinemas.co.uk for the latest up-to-date show times. You can also join the chat on Twitter @showcasecinemas or on Facebook by searching for ‘Showcase Cinemas UK’.