21 Grams (2003)

R   |    |  Crime, Drama, Thriller

21 Grams (2003) Poster

A freak accident brings together a critically ill mathematician, a grieving mother, and a born-again ex-con.

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  • Benicio Del Toro and Melissa Leo in 21 Grams (2003)
  • Alejandro G. Iñárritu in 21 Grams (2003)
  • Melissa Leo in 21 Grams (2003)
  • Benicio Del Toro in 21 Grams (2003)
  • Melissa Leo in 21 Grams (2003)
  • Melissa Leo in 21 Grams (2003)

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10 December 2005 | moonspinner55
| Ironic, brave, intense...
Snapshots of tragedy: the lives of three people--a wife and mother of two, a dying man in need of a new heart, and an ex-con turned counselor at a religious center--intersect after a tragic car accident. The film consists of episodes in their lives (before and after the accident) which are shuffled about, with scene after dramatic scene served up--one may assume--in random order; yet there's a method to this editing madness, and the film's narrative actually feels much more linear in retrospect. Director Alejandro González Iñárritu is visually addicted to squalor (he sees the lonely beauty of it) and his film is unrelentingly gritty; this ambiance is matched by the performances of all three principles (Naomi Watts, Sean Penn, and Benicio Del Toro), each of whom perform totally without vanity. It is a remarkable achievement, with a few sequences of textbook dramatics completely recharged by the style, the desperate energy, and the emotionally gripping handling. ***1/2 from ****

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