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  • Writer's pictureStephen Yanni

🏆 Poor Things (2023) - From Rebirth to Rebellion: A Journey Beyond the Norm

Updated: Jan 30

Rating: ★★★★½ (4.5/5 stars)

Released 12-08-2023

Watched 01-21-2024

Reviewed 01-21-2024

Watched in the theater Using Cinemark Movie Club

"I must go punch that baby."

In the realm of cinematic artistry, "Poor Things" emerges as a bold and unapologetically audacious film, deserving of its 4.5-star rating. The 2023 adaptation of the 1992 novel "Poor Things: Episodes from the Early Life of Archibald McCandless M.D., Scottish Public Health Officer" transcends the traditional boundaries of storytelling, plunging its audience into a world where the unimaginable becomes reality.

Directed with a masterful hand by Director Yorgos Lanthimos, "Poor Things" introduces us to Bella Baxter (Emma Stone), resurrected by an unconventional scientist, Dr. Godwin Baxter (Willem Dafoe), marking the beginning of a mesmerizing journey. Accompanied by a suave lawyer, Duncan Wedderburn (Mark Ruffalo), she embarks on an adventure across the world that is as much about self-discovery as it is a commentary on society's moral compass. The film's R rating is well-earned, with its unabashed exploration of themes such as sexuality, liberation, and the human condition, set against a backdrop of graphic nudity, disturbing material, and gore. This is not a film for the faint-hearted or the young; it's a piece of art that demands maturity and open-mindedness from its viewers.

The lead performances are nothing short of captivating. The actors bring depth and nuance to their characters, making their whirlwind journey not just believable but profoundly impactful. The narrative, free from the constraints of conventional morality, allows the protagonist to evolve into a symbol of equality and liberation, challenging societal norms and expectations.

Visually, the film is a feast for the senses. The cinematography is stunning, with each frame carefully crafted to enhance the storytelling. The use of black and white, color, light, and shadow adds layers of meaning, making the visual experience as compelling as the narrative itself.

The film’s explicit content, while integral to its storytelling, does narrow its appeal. It’s a movie that isn’t suitable for everyone, particularly those who are uncomfortable with explicit sexual content, medical gore, and frank discussions of adult themes. This is a film that engages with its audience on a deep level, prompting reflection and discussion, but it's not one for casual viewing.

"Poor Things" stands out as an art film executed with exceptional skill. While it may not have the broad appeal required for a full 5-star rating, it's a film that is destined to become a cult classic, potentially taking its place alongside midnight movie phenomena like "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" and "The Wall."

In summary, "Poor Things" is a cinematic masterpiece that challenges and enthralls. It’s a bold statement in filmmaking, not just for its thematic depth and visual splendor but for its fearless exploration of what it means to be truly liberated. If you’re prepared for its intensity and mature themes, this film is an unforgettable experience.


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