The Shape of Things (2003) Other movies recommended for you
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Plot: While visiting an art museum, a nerdy college student named Adam meets an iconoclastic artist named Evelyn and is instantly smitten. As their relationship develops, she gradually encourages Adam to change in various ways that surprise his older friends, Jenny and Philip. However, as events… Runtime: 96 min Release Date: 16 May 2003
Labute's best work since "In The Company Of Men (by gilmoresmore)
Heart wrenching and captivating look and relationships that is Neil Labute best film since his horrifying " In the Company of Men" Rachel Weisz literally hold the movie and the viewer in the palm of her hand with a supercharge performance that will be talked about for years and Paul Rudd does good as well as her object of desire. The movie starts off being one thing and ends up being something completely and terrifyingly different once it was over. This is one viewer who is still blown away by the climax and will probably always remember the lesson that was learned by watching this <more>
film. Special Thanks to Neil Labute and Rachel Weisz for making one of the most compelling movies ever made.
Very impressive in the way that it leaves a lasting impression, which good films should. The details keep returning to me long after seeing it. Obviously the kind of film that deserves a second viewing. Great cast, their ages being immaterial to me. The crafting of the story and the conviction of the actors was what mattered, and what a breath of fresh air to observe such long scenes, one after the other, without any flashy, distracting camera work. Ms Weisz and Mr Labute have created a modern day Femme Fatale - how refreshing! This is the first film I've publicly applauded in a cinema <more>
since The Magdalene Sisters. Get out to the cinema and see this now before it hits video.
This is one of the most interesting movies I've ever seen, and I've seen a few over the last 50 years. It is yet another wake up call for Americans, in the spirit of recent documentaries like Fahrenheit 911 and An Inconvenient Truth. This film is an indictment of our prejudices towards the abnormal, especially physical appearance eg sexism, ageism, racism , and our hypocritical relationship to the truth of our own feelings, particularly in our intimate relationships. Put that together with the corruption, duplicity and violence of our political life highlighted in Fahrenheit 911, and <more>
the careless and dangerous disregard of our relationship to the Earth demonstrated in An Inconvenient Truth, and you get a picture of America that is beyond disturbing. Thank you and congratulations to writer/director Neil LaBute and producer/actress Rachel Weisz her emotional believability and fluidity in this film are chilling . How this film grossed under $1 mil is a mystery to me. Maybe this is not a message we're ready to hear yet. Please see this film.
This film was absolutely not what I expected it to be. In the first half an hour, I even got a little bored, because it seemed like the story was going nowhere. Fortunately, I got my happy ending - no, not at all a film with a happy ending, just an ending that makes the film precious! It really makes you stare at the black screen, with the cast moving in front, and think about what you've seen over and over again. Of course, the brilliant play of Rachel Weisz cannot be left unmentioned, but I think that the others did a great job as well. "The Shape of things" is a film with <more>
actually just four actors and one great idea, and trust me, it is worth seeing. I am just wondering how would I feel the second time I watch it!
Cruel and Heartless Tale of Seduction and Manipulation (by claudio_carvalho)
Adam Sorenson Paul Rudd is a simple, insecure and shy student that works half period as a security guard of a museum and in a rental. He meets the anarchist and transgressor student of Arts Evelyn Ann Thompson Rachel Weizs trying to paint a penis in an important statue, and after arguing with her, in the end they schedule a dinner. Evelyn becomes his girlfriend and he introduces his best friends, Jenny Gretchen Mol and Phillip Frederick Weller , to her. As long as they stay together, Adam's behavior changes and his appearance and confidence improve influenced by Evelyn. He has an <more>
affair with Jenny, betraying and lying to Evelyn and to Phillip, and destroying their friendship. When Evelyn presents her thesis for the Master degree, Adam is surprised with revelations.When I saw the cruel "In the Company of Men" in 1997 or 1998, I became a great fan of Neil LaBute. However, his next good movies have never been in the same level of his debut. In "The Shape of Things", Neil LaBute is in shape again and presents a magnificent cruel and heartless tale of seduction and manipulation. I felt the same surprise as Adam with the plot point of the story, which is a great study of human behavior, with excellent performances of Rachel Weisz and Paul Rudd. My vote is nine.Title Brazil : "Arte, Amor e Ilusão" "Art, Love and Illusion"
All I can say about this movie that it's all about art, right? Maybe, it's all that anyone can say in their own point of view. Here you got an art student Rachel Weisz who meets a meek man name Adam Paul Rudd . These two hook up, they talk about art, meets his two friends, then the fun really begins. When the meek Adam hangs with Evelyn, the disaster is ready in the making. After a full transformation, Adam is the talk of the town, in all ways. Mostly, Evelyn gets her way in which everyone in town gets the word. So in my word, what's next? This movie has a great cast, a superb <more>
plot and a terrific outcome that you wouldn't find in any other movie I've seen. Sometimes you gotta beware who your friends are, some will be helpful, some will be self centered, and there are those who will say anything who would help themselves. Evelyn was as cold as the catch of the day and anyone would paint a picture perfect detail of everything she did. This movie deserve an A!
Rachel Weisz seems to be everywhere. From a Soviet partisan in besieged Stalingrad in "Enemy at the Gates" to a self-assured single mom in "About a Boy" and most recently as a grifter in "Confidence," she inhabits her roles with deft assurance.Here, in Neil La Bute's play-brought-to-the-screen, "The Shape of Things," Weisz is a disturbing, thought-provoking challenging character: an artist in pursuit of a master's degree but in reality a tester of uncharted waters as she combines the creation of art with her relationship with a man who, like a <more>
canvas, is transformed from without. In this case by her.Paul Rudd is Adam, an art gallery guard who Evelyn, the art student, first encounters in a quirky exchange that suggests an unfolding comedy. There are humorous moments but a darker side slowly emerges as Evelyn carefully encourages Adam to shed his dorky exterior. There's nothing new, of course, with the theme, "Change if you love me," but here Adam's relationship with his close friends, Phillip Fred Weller and Jenny very well acted by Gretchen Moll takes some disturbing turns. Is Evelyn a catalyst or an agitator? Is her commitment to art part of her persona or its sum total? These questions are increasingly explored in this short film. Does the name "Adam" have some esoteric meaning here?Some plays don't travel well to the screen. This one does. La Bute's play seems to have been little altered by him for a screenplay.What is the place of ideas and intellectual experimentation in the creation and fostering of an intimate relationship? Are there boundaries that must be respected even if truth is sacrificed in the process? Does art illuminate or camouflage the reality of a relationship? No ready answers and no final ones here but the effort yields a thought-provoking study.Rachel Weisz's emerging and brooding intensity is the anchor for this unusual film. She also produced the movie.The score is by Elvis Costello. His fans will appreciate the soundtrack.8/10.
An intelligent, sophisticated comedy that gets off to a slightly lame start but ends brilliantly (by Potty-Man)
After the first 30 minutes I felt like the film lacked energy. The pace was a little too slow for my taste, and the intensity too low. I wanted it to be snappier, more sizzling.But then, about halfway through, it got really interesting. The second half, although it still suffers from some pacing problems, makes up for the first. And then the third act is one of the most brilliant and satisfying third acts I saw in a long time. The ending brings together all of the elements and themes that were planted throughout the movie our obsession with the way things look, the line between art and real <more>
life to form insights about our lives that are as brutal as they are true.I am generally fond of Neil LaBute's work - most of the time his works contain more than what they initially seem to be I haven't see "The Wicker Man" remake yet, but I heard it was horrible . Here, what starts off as your run-of-the-mill romantic comedy/drama, develops into a cynic's paradise, presenting insights into our lives which are as brutal as they are true.Three of the four actors do a splendid job Weisz, Rudd & Mol . I especially liked Paul Rudd's performance, and the way his character changes throughout. All three, and especially Rachel Weisz, are convincing in their roles, and deliver multi-layered performances with lots of subtext. Fred Weller's performance leaves something to be desired, but the fact that his role is well written somewhat makes up for that. LaBute has successfully made all four characters three-dimensional and they feel like real people.Overall, I'd say it was a pretty great movie, certainly entertaining, and an important one to watch and analyze if you are into writing, directing or acting. Somewher, though, I feel like it didn't live up to its full potential. This script, if directed with more intensity, could have become one of my favorite movies, up there with films such as "Closer", "Glengary Glen Ross" or "Oleanna". Maybe it's the transition from the stage to the screen that made LaBute feel like he should make everything more minimalistic and restrained. But it's definitely worth checking out.
The premise set in large type on the gallery wall of Evelyn's art school installation,"moralists have no place in an art gallery," seems such a blatant contradiction to her stated intentions and by extension to Neil LaBute's that it is hard not to suspect that there is some irony or self-delusion intended by its conspicuous signing as the backdrop for LaBute's compelling and open-ended denouement. The quote is attributed to Han Suyin, pen name of the Chinese-born Elizabeth Comber, whose fascinating career, for those interested, is summarized on Wikipedia at <more>
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Han_Suyin . LaBute's thinly veiled allusion to the Fall played out by Adam and Evelyn, noted by many commentators, is perhaps the most fundamental and complex of morality tales, with Adam and Eve each owning their proper share of responsibility for the outcome. The premonition of Original Sin is played out in the opening scene, when Evelyn, in her hubristic pursuit of "truth" prepares to spray paint a penis on the monumental, fig-leafed Hercules in the art gallery, to which Adam, by walking away, symptomatically acquiesces . It is difficult, as such, to find in this morality play a clear expression of LaBute's misogyny or misandry. Adam and Evelyn are fundamentally co-conspirators, perhaps true to their fallible, gender-determined natures, who in LaBute's canny postmodern twist on Original Sin, are left to contemplate the harsh realities of their hard-won knowledge. If the ostensible purpose of Evelyn's sophomoric MFA project is to rail against "indifference," surely in the metamorphosis of Adam, who hurls the painful, "potty-mouthed" expletive at Evelyn in the final scene "F**k you, you heartless c**t" , we find that a greater knowledge has been won, as much about his own weakness as about the putative nature of women. Evelyn, for her part, played with complex ambiguity by Rachel Weisz in this final scene, exits conspicuously diminished by her "triumph." She no longer displays the confidence, and barely a shadow of the former diffidence that is her signature throughout the play. She has sacrificed all for her "art," which is laid bare as a dubious conceit regarding art's moral purposes. If her purpose was to expose Adam's lack of a center, she no less exposed her own. The gallery is empty -- none of the large audience that attended her performance save Adam is inspired to explore the installation, and she stands pathetically alone and forsaken, it seems, vulnerably clutching herself in the gallery the body language seems to acknowledge representations of Eve handed down by Masaccio, Michelangelo, and Rodin . Paradoxically, she asks Adam as she makes her exit: "Are you coming?" The presumption is that in spite of the travesty she has vested upon Adam, they are inexorably linked to each other, each the fulfillment in their way of each other's worst nature. Adam demurs, of course there is much to be said for knowledge, in spite of its costs . In this morality play, LaBute leaves it to us to sort out the consequences of fallible human behavior, and whether or not we find either of the principal players redeemable, he nevertheless leaves no doubt regarding our need to acknowledge the moral deficiencies of our archetypal ancestors. He is fundamentally a moralist in this regard, deeply rooted in the vague hope that art in this case his, not Evelyn's may transform us. In the last analysis, this is a humanistic impulse that transcends the superficial misanthropy suggested by the weaknesses of his all-too human characters.