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  • As a result, Birdman aka The Unexpected Virtue Ignorance may well be one of the best films of the year and will most certainly prove a worth contender in this year's Academy Awards held February 22, 2015

    • by Tom Byrne

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      Birdman aka “The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance”, is a surprisingly dark-comedy film denoting the struggles of faded Hollywood star Riggan Thompson (Michael Keaton). Thompson played the eponymous “Birdman” an exceptionally popular superhero, in a series of blockbuster movies decades prior. Whilst being tortured by the internal voice of “Birdman”, Riggan seeks to reclaim the past glory of his successful career by writing, directing and also starring in the Broadway Adaptation of Raymond Carver’s short story “What We Talk About When

      We Talk About Love.”

      It is an exceptionally ambitious, yet atypical film as director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu encapsulates the sadness of a washed-up Hollywood actor yearning for the glory of days past. The film is underpinned by satirical social commentary and black humour as the viewer learns of Riggan’s apparent supernatural powers, eclipsed in the opening scene transcribing the near-death of a rather ordinary supporting cast member at the hands of Riggan. Through the use of infrequent, unconventional drum beats, Inarritu successfully explores the confusion of many of the lead characters, particularly Riggan, as they navigate through this comedy of errors. One of the more profound technical achievements of this “masterpiece” is the extended, intricate tracking shots that manifest of feature film that legitimately feels as if it has been taken in a single shot. Emmanuel Lubeski’s cinematography is astounding as the viewer explores the intricacies of backstage corridors, narrow staircases, actor’s rooms, whilst highlighting intimate conversations between characters to illustrious ...

      • Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance, movie
      panoramic scenes of a main character in “flight”. The scope of Lubeski’s cinematography may yet rival some of the most acclaimed cinematographers.

      The film’s cast is superb, from Keaton’s career-turning performance as the protagonist, to Edward Norton’s pretentious, self-absorbed discourse as Mike Shiner. Zach Galifanakis’ role as Riggan’s lawyer and supposed “best friend” brings a healthy dose of “reason” to this bizarre plot, made all the more convoluted by Riggan’s delirious, overbearing and dark internal narration of the “Birdman”. (Many

      will see striking similarities in Birdman and Christain Bale’s Batman) Naomi Watts plays a neurotic cast member, her self-esteem diminishing because she is “an actress honey…” The cast’s chemistry is exceptional, with pivotal scenes between Riggan’s daughter (Emma Stone) and Mike Shiner acting as personal highlights of mine.

      As a result, “Birdman” aka “The Unexpected Virtue Ignorance” may well be one of the best films of the year and will most certainly prove a worth contender in this year’s Academy Awards held February 22, 2015.

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