Monday, January 5, 2015

The Machinist (2004) 2 of 4

** this review contains mild spoilers **

In the extras, actor Michael Ironside says that Christian Bale "did what he had to do" by losing 60 pounds, thus exposing his rib cage, for the title role in this film.  And I said back to the screen, "No, he didn't have to.  We all could have done without -- the movie's not that good."  This is not Raging Bull (for which Robert Deniro transformed himself, getting into fighting form and then getting fat for the epilogue).

Look, everybody wants to be a legend, and Christian Bale just might get there.  But no matter how impressive Bale's dedication, this is just a shaggy-dog parable, the type of story The Twilight Zone used to complete in 24 minutes but it takes 101 minutes of your precious time.  For me, it never escapes the shadows cast by any number of millennial strange-trips, including Dark City, Identity, and Bale's own American Psycho.

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