There's a lot of critics out there. And a lot of them seem very keen to slate this as much as possible, beyond what seems objectively reasonable.
What I would say is this - ignore them all (good and bad) and make your own mind up. And remember this is very close to a true story, written by a man who fell down the darkest of holes having been failed by the systems and freedoms he swore to protect.
Cherry is just an ordinary guy. There's nothing remarkable about him. And the disordered start of this film (which I struggled with to be honest) reflects the erratic nature of his drifter existence.
As the film progresses the style falls into order and then back into disorder, reflecting the rollercoaster ride of Cherry's horrific wartime experience and descent into drug addiction as he struggles to erase what he saw. The Russo Brothers together with DOP Newton Thomas Sigel, use a range of clever tricks to put you in Cherry's boots. From colour tones to aspect ratios, it takes you from soft warm love to cold hard conditioning in an instant.
I personally really enjoyed these choices, and look forward to watching it again to see what other details I might have missed on first viewing. I understand some people might feel that there's too much movie going on, but it was more than fine for me (all personal taste I guess!).
The acting from Tom Holland is exemplary and, at times, frightening. I cannot think what it must have been like to have to go to those places to portray the pain and fear he did and he should be applauded for taking such a leap with this role - he will always carry the weight of Spider-Man on his shoulders but he should be at least respected for wanting to branch out into challenging roles such as this. Ciara Bravo was excellent too, although I think I would have liked a bit more character arc from her (not her fault of course). I thought the supporting cast did well too in their roles - none of them particularly likeable (Jeff Wahlberg's Jimenez a rare exception) as they support and enable Cherry's demise.
Overall, this is a movie which really stayed with me, it still does. It's eye-opening, it's desperately sad, and it's incredibly powerful.
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