Sofia Coppola's Somewhere got off to a so-so start, earning $196,200 between Wednesday and Sunday at seven theaters. Early reviews are diametrically at odds, with some reviewers designating it great art while others finding it merely artsy. "There's a hypnotic, poetic quality to this impressionistic piece," writes Claudia Puig in USA Today. Similarly, Kenneth Turan in the Los Angeles Times describes it as "a quiet experiment, a minimalist tone poem that does more with less than we're used to seeing." A.O. Scott in The New York Times calls it "exquisite, melancholy and formally audacious." Like other critics, Scott notes that Coppola has explored the theme of how wealth and fame can create loneliness and ennui in her previous films. "This is not a matter of imitation," he writes, "but rather of mastery." Indeed, says Mick LaSalle in the San Francisco Chronicle , "This is a winning formula for Coppola" and makes for "compelling viewing." In the Chicago Sun-Times , Roger Ebert describes Copolla as "a fascinating director. She sees, and we see exactly what she sees." On the other hand, several critics are thoroughly bored by what Coppola sees. "What a flat movie," Wesley Morris remarks in the Boston Globe. It's "inertly stupefying," grumbles Rex Reed in the New York Observer , adding that it's "paced at the speed of a praying mantis sniffing a Wheat Thin." He concludes "S omewhere should be called Nowhere , because that's where it starts, that's where it's heading and that's where it lands. Bring No-Doz." It's a conclusion shared by Kyle Smith in the New York Post , who sums up "To compete with the quintessence of nullity that is Sofia Coppola's insufferable Somewhere, imagine a film called Wanna See Me Crack My Knuckles? or possibly Let's Learn How Long It Takes This Shallow Dish of Liquid To Evaporate. This isn't an artistic effort, it's a vacant lot whose signpost reads 'Space available. Movie can be made here. Or not. Whatever.'"

27/12/2010