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Lost River

Lost River

USA 2014 - with Christina Hendricks, Saoirse Ronan, Iain De Caestecker, Matt Smith, Eva Mendes ...

The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:

Movie info

Original title:Lost River
Genre:Drama, Mystery
Direction:Ryan Gosling
Cinema release:28.05.2015
Production country:USA 2014
Running time:Ca. 94 Min.
Rated:From 16 years
Web page:www.facebook.com/LostRiver
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The days when Lost River was a thriving city are long gone. Now dilapidated houses and ghostly skyscraper gorges dominate the cityscape. Who has the possibility, moves away, only few inhabitants keeps it in this dreary environment. Billy (Christina Hendricks) has so far managed well to give her two sons Franky and Bones (Iain De Caestecker) a sheltered life even in this difficult environment. But now the debts are overwhelming and she threatens to lose her home to the bank. But then the new bank manager Dave (Ben Mendelsohn) makes her a lucrative job offer, which could bring unexpected dangers for the single mother. At the same time, Bones is trying to get enough money from scrap copper to repair his car. He is targeted by Bully (Matt Smith), the self-proclaimed ruler of Lost River. Bones has to realize quickly that Billy and his gang are not to be trifled with. But like his mother, he is not willing to give up his dream of a better future - not even when he puts himself and the people around him in great danger...

With "Lost River", Ryan Gosling tries his luck as a director for the first time, and here he misses the creative versatility that he has repeatedly proven as an actor. For his directing debut, he was far too obviously inspired by his double collaboration with Nicolas Winding Refn. Colouring, narrative structure, visual language, music - all this is strongly reminiscent of "Only God Forgives" and "Drive", spiced with a pinch of David Lynch. Elements of the critic's favourite "Beasts of the southern wild" can also be found here. To be inspired by other works is in principle not yet a cause for criticism. But if there are hardly any own ideas recognizable and some aspects seem to be directly copied, then it is simply difficult to let real enthusiasm arise.

No question, "Lost River" has some fascinating moments. The locations in Detroit and Benoît Debie's camera work create a gripping, sometimes almost hypnotic atmosphere that is hard to escape. And also the actors are convincing in themselves. Especially "Doctor Who" star Matt Smith as brutal bully is really great. But Gosling simply doesn't want to succeed in bringing the occasionally good aspects together into a harmonious whole. The story is more than confusing and some scenes are completely meaningless. Bizarre ideas and bizarre pictures are all well and good. Only when they don't serve a real purpose dramaturgically and merely serve to make the film seem unadapted and avant-garde, does the viewer quickly lose interest in the story and soon become overwhelmed by severe boredom.

The ambitions behind the film are more obvious than the story that is to be told here. But paying tribute to his great role models is simply not enough to deliver a convincing directorial work. There are interesting moments, short flashes of cinematic ingenuity - but also a lot of warm-up and brain-teasing messes. The end result is atmospheric boredom, which most of the viewers are a bit confused and released into reality. If Ryan wants to convince Gosling as a director as well, as he did several times as an actor, then he still has to find his own tone. The potential is there, only the execution that is too much oriented towards other filmmakers is more than poor. And unfortunately there can only be one "conditionally worth seeing" for that.

An article by Frankfurt-Tipp

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Cinema trailer for the movie "Lost River (USA 2014)"
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