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USA 2001
Directed by
Cameron Crowe
156 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
1 stars

Vanilla Sky

You don't need to have seen Alejandro Amenabar's Open Your Eyes (1997), of which Vanilla Sky is a remake, to find this an insufferably pretentious exercise in narcissistic self-indulgence by its star and producer Tom Cruise and its writer/director and producer Crowe (Cruise's sister Lindsay Wagner was the third producer) who helms this bloated carcass with the finesse of a complete hack. If you have, then you'll find it an egregious travesty of what was a wonderfully inventive and beguiling film and a perfect example of the qualitative difference between European film, which does more with less, and Hollywood, which manages to do so much less with much, much more.

Everything in the original is gratuitously boosted from what was a marvellously believable psychological thriller to a nauseating fantasy of glossy fashion magazine proportions - Penélope Cruz (who played the same role in the original film and was for a while was a newsstand item with Cruise) and Cameron Diaz primp and pout, each trying to be more sex-kittenishly cute than the other, only to be outdone by Cruise whose character is so rich that he has larger-than-life hologram of John Coltrane at his birthday party. Tim Spall and Noah Taylor make embarrassingly bad appearances that are even further degraded by some of the worst shot-reverse shot editing I've ever seen.




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