Wednesday, 27 January 2010
Zodiac, like his earlier Seven, happens to be a terrific achievement for David Fincher for the simple reason that, despite being in essence a serial killer movie, it has managed to be far more than the narrow conventions of the genre. Based on the unsolved case files of a cryptic real-life serial killer called Zodiac who left a trail of bodies in the 60’s and 70’s California, the movie follows the consequent effects on the lives of four individuals – a geeky cartoonist working for San Francisco Chronicles (Jake Gylengall), a cynical and alcoholic crime reporter (Robert Downey Jr.), a quietly competent police detective (Mark Ruffalo) and his soft-spoken partner (Anthony Edwards). Intensely moody and insanely gripping, it is an incredibly dark, meticulous and compelling examination of human obsession, and a chilling account of the publicity-crazy society we live in. Despite what the plot suggests, violence plays more of a thematic role than a physical one (most of the time existing just outside the camera’s vision); thus what has emerged is a riveting character study that is far more cerebral than the kind of visceral movies we’ve come to expect from Fincher. The movie has benefited immensely from the exceptional, tour de force performances by the lead actors, and the interactions they share onscreen. The soundtrack does very well in capturing the zeitgeist of the times, and the brilliant atmospheric visuals make for an exhilarating viewing experience.
p.s. This happens to be my 300th review here. Let me raise a small toast to that.
Director: David Fincher
Genre: Psychological Thriller/Mystery/Ensemble Film/Docu-fiction