Infinitely Polar Bear
is a movie starring
Mark Ruffalo, Zoe Saldana, and Imogene Wolodarsky.
A manic-depressive mess of a father tries to win back his wife by attempting to take full responsibility of their two young, spirited daughters, who don't make the overwhelming task any easier.
In the late 70's, in Boston, the bipolar Cameron "Cam" Stuart lives with his mulatto wife Maggie and their daughters Amelia and Faith in an isolated house in the countryside. When Cam is fired from his job, he has a mental breakdown and Maggie is forced to institutionalize him. When he is released, he moves to a small apartment while Maggie works to support the children. She decides to apply to an MBA to improve her income and she is accepted by the Columbia University in New York. She asks Cam to take care of the girls for eighteen months and he agrees despite his fears. Maggie moves to New York and Cam is responsible for Amelia and Faith education. Will the scheme work?Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Based on Maya Forbes' childhood with her sister. Her sister China sings the song "The Northern Line" over the end credits. See more »
On a book shelf there are various board games in the background, including "Trivial Pursuit." The movie is set in 1978, Trivial Pursuit was not released on the market until 1982. See more »
My father was diagnosed manic depressive in 1967. He'd been going around Cambridge in a fake beard calling himself Jesus John Harvard. When he got better, he started working in public television in Boston. He met my mother there. He walked up and took her picture. On their first date, he took her on a driving tour of New England and told her all about his nervous breakdowns. She didn't care. She said it was a crazy time. Half the people they knew were going bananas. So ...
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Despite being a little too by-the-book and repetitive,"Infinetly Polar Bear" is a pleasing piece of narrative that succeeds thanks to a brilliant portrayal and definition of characters.
As stated above the film isn't that fascinating or riveting of a drama. It hits the same note again and again and does not stray away from it almost anytime. It is generally predictable and the dramatic texture isn't as intense as it wants to be,it kind of hits you very light. Moreover there are situations that are overplayed a little too much in the beginning which gave the movie a hard time at getting started and being believable, yet fortunately it picked up immediately as soon as these couple of scenes ended. So to sum it up, it simply doesn't give the necessary gravitas and intensity (both comedic and dramatic) to the situation for it to be as riveting as a drama as it could have as it could have been and I should add that I think that the cinematography partially contributed to this: it doesn't have enough style or distinction for it to stick out, leaving it in super generic dramatic territory and palette and it has a variety of camera movements that get distracting and aren't integrated well enough in the story. It could have really sparked had their been some distinctive look and approach in my opinion.
Despite all of negatives above, this movie really succeeds in making you care about the characters, sticking with them and ultimately giving you a true emotional link. That is undebatable thanks to very good work from both Saldana and Ruffalo and especially the two girls playing their daughters. But even more than that I believe that in the end it is the script that makes you really care because of how well it defines characters, situations and overall story arch. There maybe not enough originality in storytelling or some non-clarity in the bipolar aspect of the film, but man do the characters stick out and make for a pleasant view and journey, culminating in a finale that got me more than I imagined.
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