Thursday, September 04, 2014
Writes Patrick Z. McGavin: Iñárritu is a great orchestrator, and the pieces just flow together. "Birdman" is a work of many layers, in ferreting out how closely Keaton’s own career parallels that of the character, the volatile interplay of the performers and the desire to reconcile the thrilling technical and formal ideas to a more direct and pure emotional response.
The excitement is also about the talented Iñárritu at last striking the perfect balance of sensibility and technique. After the early promise of his debut, "Amores Perros," Iñárritu gave way to a lingering sense of being trapped, like Keaton, painting himself into a corner with elliptical, nonlinear stories that felt increasingly closed and mechanically constructed and turned on strained coincidences and psychologically implausible actions.
With a lesser director, "Birdman" would appear too much, like the syncopated and often electrifying jazz drum work of Antonio Sanchez that punctuates most of the film. The film has a lift and tremendous lyric freedom. This feels like a work of the moment, of the kind of freedom, style and energy that only the cinema is capable of.