Friday, 8 June 2012

Film Review Friday [Requiem For A Dream, 2000]


Me and Lauren have been so busy lately, we watched a film however I had seen it before but not for Lauren, so I guess this still counts. Here is her review:

This week, we watched Requiem for a Dream (Darren Aronofsky, 2000). I know right, how have I not seen it before?! I don't know to be honest, I'd obviously heard a lot about it before and seen clips on some of my university course but never actually sat down and watched it all. So we did just that.
Requiem for a Dream follows the lives of Harry, played by Jared Leto, his girlfriend Marion, his friend and his mother, and their downward spiral on their search for a better life, which is all thanks to their various drug addictions.

Harry, Marion and Tyrone are your typical heroin addicts, they spend all their time trying to get their next fix. We see them beg, steal and borrow to fund their habit, which is pretty degrading. But alongside this, we see their dreams and aspirations – Harry to be a successful businessman, Marion to set up her own clothing store – which is an interesting juxtaposition but it makes it more saddening when you see these characters at the end of the film, all very much alone and it's very unlikely they'll get to live this 'better life' they've all been dreaming of. I did some reading on the film and found out that Jared Leto actually befriended some heroin junkies in Brooklyn to help get into his role which I thought was pretty cool!

Sara, Harry’s mother, seems quite vulnerable but decent in the first few scenes, with Harry stealing her beloved television set for drug money, and with her being heavily influenced by her neighbours opinions on her appearance and other such things. Upon hearing she’d been offered the chance to appear on TV, she becomes hooked on diet pills to try and look good for her appearance on the show. Her obsession with looking good sees Sara hallucinating and becoming an all round crazy addict. I found Sara's experience probably the scariest, as we saw her entire downfall, she looked pretty mad and her hallucinations made me jump out of my skin! Sara's delusion was pretty sad as she had no idea what she was getting herself into with the pills, and she genuinely does believe that her stint on television will bring her the better life she'd been hoping for.

The film is very fast paced (lots of cuts!), and actually isn't very long either, I think it's about 100 minutes long. Everybody knows that drugs are bad, but this film is still quite an eye opener into addiction and the lengths people will go to when they're desperate. They're all living in their own utopia but the end of the film sees the characters' sad reality. 

If you haven't seen Requiem for a Dream (let's face it, I was probably the last person on earth to see it), I really recommend you do! It's pretty great.

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