‘The Goldfinch’ TIFF Review: A Gorgeous, Incomplete, Almost Incomprehensible Disaster of Sorts

✯½

Donna Tartt won the Pulitzer Prize for her 2013 novel, but the idea of adapting such a dense novel for the screen already seemed like a daunting task in and of itself. There’s a lot to admire about the effort that director John Crowley had tried to put into adapting The Goldfinch into a film but it’s also rather apparent how much of this does at all translate well onto the big screen. There’s a great story that could easily have been told from reading Donna Tartt’s novel, but even with John Crowley’s literate directorial approach, there’s so little sense to be found out of what he could churn out from bringing The Goldfinch to the screen. At its long running time, it still feels really slight yet even then you feel like you’re being overloaded with information that won’t ever be leading yourself anywhere. The more it goes on, the more it only becomes confusing, and any trace of meaning that it’s reaching for only results in more jumping around in terms of its structure, adding up to nowhere.

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It (2017) – Review

✯✯✯

Stephen King’s It has always been a difficult novel to adapt to another medium as proven by the original miniseries which has only begun to show how terribly it has aged over the years (I haven’t been able to make it through the miniseries after reading the novel for myself and finding it absolutely fantastic). The notion that a feature film based entirely on the first half of the novel would have indicated some promise but at the same time I was skeptical because Andy Muschietti hasn’t impressed me with his prior directorial effort, Mama. But it wouldn’t be fair to expect a film that gets down to what the novel had achieved, so on its own ground I enjoyed what Muschietti had made here, despite obvious room for improvement.

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