|Die Frankfurt-Tipp Bewertung:|
|Laufzeit:||Approx. 137 min.|
|FSK:||From 12 years|
The once celebrated writer Michael (Liam Neeson) is stuck in a creative low. He simply does not want to succeed in his latest work. In a hotel in Paris he hopes to find the necessary peace to finish the book. But when his lover Anna (Olivia Wilde) shows up, his emotional world gets so mixed up that it's no longer possible to think of sensible writing. At the same time, American businessman Scott (Adrien Brody) in Italy tries to steal the latest designs from major fashion houses. Just when his mission seems to have been successfully completed, he meets the hypothermic but extremely seductive Monika (Moran Atias) in a bar - an encounter with consequences that could change his life forever. Former soap actress Julia (Mila Kunis), on the other hand, is trying to get her life back under control. This is extremely important, because it is important for her to get the right to visit her son again. But after a terrible incident, for which Julia seems to be to blame, her ex-husband, the successful artist Rick (James Franco), has all the trumps in his hand. As hard as Julia's lawyer Theresa (Maria Bello) tries, she seems to have lost her last chance long ago. Three stories in three cities that seem to have nothing to do with each other but are nevertheless inseparably linked…
After "L.A. Crash", Oscar winner Paul Haggis has once again staged an episode drama with "Third Person", the individual storylines of which reveal their direct connection only at the end. While the three stories have themes such as failed relationships, lost children, or dark shadows of the past, they are also about the future. But other connections are not recognizable. But then the storylines seem to mix with each other. For example, Julia appears in Michael's hotel room to clean up - but he's in Paris, while Julia actually works in a New York hotel. And Scott and the writer suddenly have a lot in common.
The viewer can only guess what all this means in the end. It is true that the staging here is not very subtle, especially in terms of symbolism. Nevertheless, many things remain in the dark and one can only guess which picture should come out at the end of this sometimes very tough puzzle. The problem here is not that the film is too heady. Rather, Haggis simply doesn't want to succeed this time in emotionally involving the audience in the stories. As good as the actors play, as captivating as the visual language is and as good as some scenes are built up, the overall construction seems to be cool and bulky. The story of Julia, for example, is in itself a great emotional cinema, especially as Mila Kunis delivers a really intense performance. And yet it's just hard to empathize with her and get carried away by her fate.
"Third Person" has very good moments, that's out of the question. The ensemble drama is also really interesting in itself, especially as it remains in the memory for a long time after the end and inspires one to interpret it oneself. However, there are too many lengths, too few really stirring scenes, which clearly reduces the entertainment value of the episode film. Those who simply want to see good acting cinema in elegant pictures will undoubtedly get their money's worth here. But those who also hope for a thoroughly convincing and engaging story will not be able to do much with this work. Therefore: Despite a certain quality only conditionally worth seeing!
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