Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Movie Review: The Night Listener
This is one of those Robin Williams art films. No funny guy routines here. Robin's character is Gabriel Noone a late night radio story teller who is running out of stories to tell.
Basically, Gabriel's relationship with his lover, Jess, portrayed by Bobby Cannavale, is crumbling. This after Jess is "recovering" from AIDS. The recovery part is not explained but apparantly now that he has more of his life back to live he wants to do it without Gabriel. The interesting part is that the bulk of Gabriel's career was to tell stories about how he was coping and helping his partner to cope with AIDS and the terminal view of life.
Enter Pete Logand (Rory Culkin/Toni Collette), a young boy who was sexually abused by his parents and has written a book about his life. A publisher gives Gabriel the book and Gabriel is astonished by the maturity of the author, and begins a "relationship" with the boy as two professional authors giving advice, and supporting Pete as he is dying from AIDS, contracted during his childhood. Pete has been adopted by his caseworker Donna Logand (Toni Collette) to get him away from the threat of his mother, who was one of his abusers and is wanted by police.
The idea that Pete and Donna are the same person comes from Jess who notices on the phone the voices sound the same. This starts the movement of the movie when Gabriel goes in search of Pete & Donna Logand, in a small town in Wisconsin.
At this point the mystery keeps on building and the creepiness begins. Many of the townspeople think that Gabriel may be one of the pedophiles coming back for Pete, and Donna seems to never be found.
If you are looking for a creepy, suspenseful and full of mystery and twists movie, check out The Night Listener.
One thing I have to say is that in the theater where I viewed this film there was one very "funny" response from an audience member. The theater had only about 10 people (other than me) and they were all well over 60. Throughout the film you knew Robin was portraying a homosexual and he and his lover even shared embraces. Also the movie dealt with a severe subject of pedophilia. But at the end of the movie Robin's character gets a kiss...actually more of a peck on the cheek...from the actor playing his lover. After all the other stuff in the movie. A little old lady saw this peck on the cheek and LOUDLY exclaimed her disgust saying, "oh that's just filthy."
I just wanted to slap her and say why did it take a LITTLE kiss to spark you into action...and you weren't bothered by any of the other stuff?....but I just left it alone.