The Adjustment Bureau (2011)

by George Watches Things

***

The problem with this movie is that it doesn’t try hard enough. If it wanted to, it could have given us some backstory or some motivation for Richardson, Thompson, and Mitchell (Slattery, Stamp, and Mackie respectively), but it didn’t. Those characters didn’t feel whole, and there was nothing wrong with the acting. I blame the movie.

The Adjustment Bureau doesn’t earn the rules that it not only makes up for itself, but then changes. The Fedora People can’t feel the vibrations from the water? And what happens when one of the “adjusters” just wants to get to the other side of a door he’s opening?

It makes up for it, somewhat, in a very strong chemistry between it’s leads. I don’t think I’ve seen a stronger female performance this year, if we’re not counting Juliette Binoche (in Certified Copy) and Leslie Mann (in Rio). Kudos to Emily Blunt. The romance between her character, the British dancer/wedding crasher named Elise, and Matt Damon‘s party boy Senate candidate David Norris is comfortingly believable.

They meet in the men’s restroom of a New York hotel. (Don’t worry, Larry Craig isn’t involved.) Immediately, you fall for them, as they fall for each other. Soon after, due to a failure by adjuster Mitchell, they meet again. Unfortunately, this second meeting was not supposed to happen, according to THE PLAN. And that’s where it gets hairy.

Certain moments are inspired and inspiring. They mesmerize you (thanks to Damon and Blunt), and make you think about life and what role higher powers play in it. Other moments (cough cough, the emotionally weak end) leave you at a complete loss for words. I didn’t know what to make of them. They felt like something out of a fluffy Disney movie in which Zac Efron’s brother dies, or something. But *** means, for me, that you should definitely see it. The benefits outweigh the risks.

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