Thursday, December 10, 2015

Youth Review - 2½ Stars

Italian Director Paolo Sorrentino creates a Fellini like world in “Youth.”  Michael Caine takes the lead as a mostly retired director/composer on an extended holiday in an  odd Swiss resort.  Caine pals around with Harvey Keitel, who has come with a group of writers to work on the script of a planned artistic triumph of a film.  Rachel Weisz completes a triangle as Caine’s daughter married to Keitel’s son.  The men remain friends even though Weisz’s husband is in the process of leaving her for a younger woman who happens to be a rock star.  The spa looks like “The Grand Budapest Hotel” during its prime.  The old men gasp as Miss Universe joins them au natural in a heated swimming pool.  Paul Dano adds a bit more eccentricity as an actor considering the role of Hitler for an upcoming project.  Dano dons his Hitler costume and glides through the dining room to sheer silence.  Much is made of a cameo by Jane Fonda, as an aging star set to work with Keitel.  She delivers an aria while wearing making up designed to make her look even older than her 70 plus years.  At times “Youth” irritated me.  But every time I got a little antsy, something burst on the screen to get my attention back where it belonged.  The film looks beautiful.  It ends with a concert performance that stopped me in my tracks.   Movies like “Youth” don’t come along very often—sometimes riveting, sometimes silly, sometimes amazing.  Does it deliver what it promises?  Art film in English  Is it entertaining?  Keeps your attention.  Is it worth the price of admission?  You said you wanted something different right?