the fresh films reviews

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White Noise (2022)

Directed by:
Noah Baumbach


White Noise

136 minutes

Produced by:
Noah Baumbach
David Heyman
Uri Singer
Written by (based on the novel by Don DeLillo):
Noah Baumbach

Cast includes:

Prof. Jack Gladney Adam Driver ˝
Babette Gladney Greta Gerwig
Prof. Murray Siskind Don Cheadle ˝

Denise Gladney

Raffey Cassidy ˝
Heinrich Gladney Sam Nivola -
Steffie Gladney

May Nivola

Winnie Richards Jodie Turner-Smith -
Elliot Lasher André Benjamin -
Alfonse Sam Gold -
Grappa Carlos Jacott -
Mr. Gray Lars Eidinger
Dr. Hookstratten Kenneth Lonergan -



It had been said that Don DeLillo's novel was "unfilmable", and Noah Baumbach largely demonstrates why in this misfire adaptation. Adam Driver and Greta Gerwig play an intellectual couple with a pathological fear of death. They are caught up with the zeitgeist of the early 1980s, swayed by consumerism, transcendental spirituality, and a postmodern worldview. They are experts at keeping everything at a distance, from raising their children to analyzing Hitler, but there is a flaw with this mindset: it cannot be applied to their own deaths.

The world Baumbach creates here is a glossed one, meant to instil a combination of nostalgia and futurism, while he vigorously tries to convey the quirkiness of the story. But he does it so meticulously and vehemently that it all becomes forced and inane. All the characters talk with the same choreographed cadence, which drains any spontaneity from the discourse. And the many remarkable situations they end up in never feel dynamic, but rather disjointed and oddly staged. There's also supposed to be quite a bit of comedy in the movie – suggested by the many wild exaggerations and deadpan comments – but there's little craftsmanship or sense of timing involved. A big disappointment from Baumbach after his brilliant Marriage Story a couple of years back.

Copyright © 09.03.2023 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang