Third Person

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +3

Content: -4

Liam Neeson, Olivia Wilde, Adrian Brody, Mila Kunis, James Franco, Kim Basinger, Maria Bello, Moran Atias. Drama. Written & directed by Paul Haggis.

FILM SYNOPSIS: Three interlocking love stories involving three couples in three cities Ė Rome, Paris, and New York, each also having to do with a missing child.

PREVIEW REVIEW: Quirky and mesmerizing, Third Person is one of those movies you canít stop talking about, whether you like the film or not. Itís witty, itís unusual, and itís engrossing, all thanks to the imaginative writer/director Paul Haggis and his fine cast.

I must confess, my appreciation for Third Person, despite its R-content, stems from the fact that no one wears a cape, no car suddenly turns into a giant robot, and no one named Seth is among the cast. In other words, Iím desperately seeking another Tree of Life or Life of Pi. Third Person doesnít measure up to those two examples, except for the talking-about-it afterwards bit.

Despite its stylish craftsmanship, the substance becomes mired down by its murky multi-narratives. Suddenly you are wondering if the picture is profound or just convoluted. The filmmaker is known for packing his films with intertwining plotlines whose characters come together for moments of revelation or redemption. Sadly, for those of us who seek revelation and redemption through our developing walk with Christ, director Paul Haggisí work manages to avoid our Savior at every turn. We find our solutions within ourselves, without the aid of Christ, according to this and most other filmmakers. There is no reference to Jesus, except for the misuse of His name, of course. (Funny how that doesnít seem to bother most filmgoers these days.)

Revealingly, the characters, in general, stumble through their lives desperately seeking what they feel will bring solace to the mind and body, yet none explore a spiritual path in order to find such comfort and resolve. So, while the story is cut from a different bolt of summer Hollywood cloth, weíre still left with a quilt of many colors that avoids any spiritual thread.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Sony Classics Pictures

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: Most of the cast gets to use the f- and/or s-word at least once Ė must be in their contract; around 25 obscenities.

Profanity: I caught three misuses of Christís name.

Violence: A couple of violent moments, but not excessive.

Sex: Two graphic sexual situations; a provocative dance between two women.

Nudity: Graphic nudity once as a woman is seen running through a hotel hallway sans clothing.

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: Several characters smoke and drink; bad choice Adrian Brody Ė skinny people smoking usually leads to bad things.

Other: None

Running Time: 137 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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