The Shape of Things
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Christian Science Monitor
LaBute is coming of age as an artist, and his future looks brighter than I ever would have suspected a year ago. Enfant terrible or not, he's starting to become a substantial figure in American film.
Disarmingly funny new film with a doozy of a twist ending... may be his best, cruelest, most vital act of confrontation yet.
The cast helps enliven what could otherwise come off as a treatise. All four actors played these roles during the play's off-Broadway run.
What starts out as a talky, modern-day re-interpretation of "Pygmalion" (Henry Higgins is explicitly mentioned) turns into something heart-wrenchingly bleak.
LaBute never loses sight of what shape he wishes this crafty story to take. In the end, his aim is true.
Strikes me as more of a thesis piece than anything LaBute has put his name to thus far. Its characters don't seem to be people as much as they are stand-ins for ideas.
TV Guide Magazine
Combined with the Mamet-lite dialogue, a medley of all-too-deliberate pauses, smug literary allusions and calculatedly careless repetitions of the word "thingie" that obscure the meaning hidden in supposedly meaningless prattle, the result is a chic, vitriolic polemic that's as irritating as it means to be provocative.
New York Post
Despite an empowered female protagonist, manages in its own way to be as misogynous as "In the Company of Men."
This might be the edgiest film of the year -- if the year were 1982.
At best, the movie is a problematic chamber piece; at worst, a misdirected, slightly misanthropic pretension.
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