Riding across Manhattan in a stretch limo in order to get a haircut, a 28-year-old billionaire asset manager's day devolves into an odyssey with a cast of characters that start to tear his world apart.
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David Cronenberg has made some pivotally powerful films ("Eastern Promises", "History of Violence") but "Cosmopolis" does not flirt or touch the legitimacy of his past movies.
A dark, senseless "awakening" in a materialistic, capitalistic "cosmos"; billionaire "Eric Packer" spends a day in a white stretch limousine (technologically equipped), visited by staff, girlfriends, financial advisers, even his doctor; while watching his portfolio shrink into oblivion; his car massacred by disgruntled, frustrated mobs; his wife of few weeks, regains her senses, abandons him. He is an emotionally bereft cad; undeserving of a modicum of empathy.
With galvanizing effort I try not to be influenced by actors off screen personas; they are not cognizant of my existence; they are a financial obligation; their only responsibility, to entertain. I lack all interest in their relationships (whether asexual, heterosexual or homosexual), their political affiliations or vacation destinations. But it was hopeless to shun the bombardment of the Kristen Stewart/Robert Pattinson debacle; I went to see "Cosmopolis" because I pitied Mr. Pattinson, cuckolded, humiliated by Ms. Stewart; universally, blatantly advertized; an error I pledge never to repeat.
"Eric Packer" poker-faced, staccato-voiced, disillusioned titan of mega-wealth; Mr.Pattinson's physiognomy is the sole redeeming aspect of this tiring, excruciating, exacerbating, pedantic diatribe dedicated to the blight of capitalism, its concentration on the few, and exclusion of the masses. Eric, heartless, devoid of passion, spews intellectual sophisms; questions, quests for validity in his vacuous world. He and his wife have droning, incomprehensible, zombie-like conversations; two windup, robotic oddities, devoid of connective tissue.
Minor roles, depicted by major actors (Amy Morton, Juliette Binoche, Paul Giamatti) could not save this platitudinous prattle from sinking into a mire of murky melodrama.
ONE & 1/2 STARS!!