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Requiem for a Dream (2000)
This is an NC-17 review for a film of similar content
Putting aside the brilliant drug sequences, a surprisingly GREAT use of split screen shots, a perfectly honed musical score, and utterly superb acting, this film indulges those of us who enjoy wallowing in our own self-pity and hopelessness. The emotions of each of the four major players was absolutely real and just too powerful at times, as never have I experienced a film that was able draw me in so drastically. This film is not about sympathising for drug addicts (as many of you prematurely enjoy claiming), but about raising an awareness of things people desire and want, and ultimately how they may affect us if we allow them to control ourselves.
Other films claim they have pushed the envelope with their pretentious plot-lines and explicitly gratuitous visuals, but Requiem actually delivers in a very progressional and extremely natural flow. This film isn't preoccupied with shock value, but instead keeping a certain level of integrity that other films miss when dealing with such subject matter as substance abuse and withdrawal. You feel just as useless and pointless as the four players do, and at times...it hurts just to look at them.
Whatever, I'm assuming you know the plot-line and have read other reviews to get to this one, so I'll keep this wrap-up short: This movie is beyond comparing to any other, and it would be wrong to catagorise it in any specific genre. All of those cynical critics that claim that Requiem is the shell of it's predescesors are...well...wrong, but some people insist on living their lives in a constant state of an emotional flatline. I have never seen a film quite like Requiem, but if any future films have the ability to hit me harder than this one, I will most likely die from sheer bliss.