Beautiful Boy (2018)
Critic Consensus: Beautiful Boy sees Timothée Chalamet and Steve Carell delivering showcase work that's often powerful enough to make up for the story's muted emotional impact.
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as David Sheff
as Nic Sheff
as Karen Barbour
as Vicki Sheff
as Jasoper Sheff
as Jasper Sheff
as Daisy Sheff
as 4 & 6 Year-Old Nic Sheff
as 12-Year-Old Nic Sheff
as Julia's Mother
as Dr. Brown
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Critic Reviews for Beautiful Boy
There's an emptiness to this story, and it's a shame because Chalamet could've really given us the depths of what was going on in this kids life.
It is a film of rare emotional complexity and punch - not just wincingly sharp on the business of addiction in particular, but also a heart-piercing ode to fatherhood at large.
Yet Beautiful Boy is that rare cinematic artifact, a film that purports to be about one thing (in this case, addiction), but when you scrape away the surface dazzle, is really about everything.
This supersensitive and tasteful movie is all but insufferable, suppressing a sob at the tragedy of drug addiction afflicting someone so young and "beautiful".
Audience Reviews for Beautiful Boy
BEAUTIFUL BOY (2 Stars) Ugh. This isn't even a movie. There's no real story. It just keeps repeating itself to death and then ends. Yes, it mirrors the cycle of addiction that plague so many people, but that doesn't make for good storytelling. Timothée Chalamet does some great work when portraying his character's addiction to heroin, but I never believed him as a meth addict. There's a distinction that I don't think he quite captured. Steve Carell here has that annoying high pitch in his voice we typically see from Tom Cruise when he plays an end-of-his-rope character. Major points deducted for the terrible choice to edit a montage to "Sunrise/Sunset" from FIDDLER ON THE ROOF. Who thought that worked? I want names!!
It felt like it was taking this a long time to really find its groove and then I checked my phone to see where we were time-wise and it was an hour and a half in. Needless to say, Beautiful Boy has no groove to be found. Having not read the source material this may immediately mean less to me, but the structuring of this story as its done in the film doesn't help. It's not hard to see what the film is trying to do in telling the two parallel perspectives of the father and the son caught in this battle with addiction, but in doing so what results is a disjointed mess of a movie (at least upon first watch). We never spend long enough periods with either of the characters to garner any real sympathy for them-not until the end anyway when Carell brings it all home. It's kind of a weird movie too, but worse is the fact it's a boring weird movie. Every single aspect of these people's lives revolves around coping with addiction and addiction itself, but there has to be more in order to have the audience invest in these lives. I adore Steve Carell and Timothï¿ 1/2 (C)e Chalamet seems like a genuinely nice, cool, and grateful kid, but even their strenuous performances feel exhausting and void of any tangible pathos.
The story's impact is almost diluted by the film's editing (with its jumps in time and flashbacks within flashbacks) and questionable choice of music, which makes it kind of emotionally stiff, even though that is compensated by two amazing performances by Timothée Chalamet and Steve Carell.
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