The Danish Girl: (Mild) Meaningless Theatricality

I love you, because you are the only person who made sense of me. And made me, possible.

Let me just get a couple of things straight before we get started. I haven’t read the book, therefore this merely a conundrum of thoughts about the movie itself. But, I’m actually considering adding it to massive pile of future books on my shelf, so, if you have some opinions to share about said manuscript feel free to do it on the comment section.

The Danish Girl. First things first, anyone that has read one or two of my pseudo-intelectual views on the fresh generation of actors is quite aware I have a thing for Eddie Redmayne. You may call it a special kind of faith, I do. But, oh boy, did he screw me on this one (I do mean figuratively, you know). Eddie’s performance is exaggerated, I think, and Tom Hooper doesn’t deliver, bless his heart and intentions, but he really doesn’t. But, we’ll get to Mr. Hooper in a moment. The beauty of this movie, and there is some, not all is lost, is in Alicia Vikander‘s performance. She stole what Eddie once seemed to have, subtlety and power make a wonderful combination. Redmayne’s entire act is quite fake, it lacks meaning, it’s far too theatrical, it looses its sense of purpose.

Tom Hooper missed the mark on this one as well, I believe. Sure there were some good moments, the poeticization of Lili’s view on transgender’s role in nature is quite endearing (I’m not sure of its accuracy, as I admit to know very little of how a person like Lili would feel, and I do mean that with sincere respect), but it just doesn’t all come together properly. It jumps and it doesn’t land safely, it’s neatly cut but it would never make a decent collage.

You would figure that has been Hooper’s issue. He’s quite the magician when it comes to weirdly colored walls and artsy close-ups, and that’s wonderful, more power to him. But, the way he tells his stories, it might have been fresh on The King’s Speech era, but it hasn’t found a way of reinventing itself, it has become dull and overly polished. Much like Eddie Redmayne, his gestures might be on point, and the issue isn’t even his over the top theatrical ways, there’s just nothing there. He may frown his lips uncontrollably all he wants and force an ugly cry time and time again, yet, while there isn’t a damn thing going through is eyes, it will amount to nothing.

So, yes, this one is Vikander’s show. And I’m glad it is. She saved everything she could. And, in the end, it’s also Gerda’s show, the struggle of this woman who’s completely stripped off the husband she loves in a brutal way is also important, in my eyes, it was the most important. And I’m guessing that’s the point. Since she is indeed the Danish Girl.

It’s a dull movie. Dull for its potential. Don’t take this the wrong way, The Danish Girl is not necessarily a piece of cinematic junk. It’s an OK movie, you might even enjoy it on Sunday afternoon, get to the end of it inspired. But, it will be hard not to think it could have been more. And it wasn’t. Heck, if it weren’t for some sex scenes on that I could have taken a nap. Seriously. It’s always sad when a movie has to rely on boobs and pubes to make it, even sadder in this particular case, honestly.

Yet, on a side important note, I noticed quite a few people were shocked by the screening and some poorly placed jokes were tossed. And you know what? That’s a great thing. People questioning, people being confronted with something they weren’t expecting, new realities that are decades old and still leave some inconvenient sighs. So, for what is worth, I do believe The Danish Girl is, on that sense, a step in the right direction. With all the pretty sets and Academy award winners running naked you might forget movies are somewhat (a huge somewhat) about that, embroiling new things on people’s mentalities and, at their own pace, changing the world, bit by bit, scene by scene.

The Danish Girl. Have you seen it? Share your thoughts about it with us!

 

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2 thoughts on “The Danish Girl: (Mild) Meaningless Theatricality

  1. Totally agree! This movie was one of my most keenly anticipated films of late 2015 and one which landed flat (despite the subject material promising so much more). Redmayne’s coquettishness was unfortunately over-played, but glad that Vikander stole the show (I’m digging up back catalogues of her movies just to see how I could have missed her growing up!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Definitely, Vikander is great. I haven’t checked the entire length of her filmography but I’d say I’ve seen at least a third of her movies. Really liked Ex Machina as well. And I’m a reluctant fan of The Fifth Estate.
      She’s coming into the big roles now, it’s a great time to be alive. xD

      Like

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