Robert Pattinson and David Cronenberg seemed like an extremely odd pairing, and I was intrigued enough to go and see this film despite the several reservations I had read in reviews.
A young, exceedingly rich entrepreneur sets off on a journey across town in his cocooned limousine, and has short encounters with people along the way. The character is isolated from the majority of mankind, and passes through demonstrations, diners and a funeral almost as if he is in another dimension, not truly of this world.
The script is weighty and demanding – wordy monologues – and even when there is an exchange between two people, it’s more a two-way stream of consciousness than a dialogue. I often felt like I wanted to pause and rewind to make sure I hadn’t missed anything.
Pattinson is rarely off-screen, and for around 60% of the time carries it off well – being enigmatic and outside of normality has been, after all, his stock-in-trade up to now. There were occasions, though, when I felt as if he just didn’t understand what he was supposed to do, that he was lost, and that he didn’t have the weight to carry the script. Juliette Binoche and Mathieu Amalric, by contrast, totally owned their cameos.
I was intrigued, never bored but sometimes a bit mystified, and came away with the sensation that I should read the book to get the full effect.