Alexander Payne, the director of Downsizing, uses a blend of satire and oddly placed drama to bring awareness to popular social and political issues. Despite several laughs in the beginning, I didn’t enjoy this film. It took very odd turns and it never returned to complete the story. I left sincerely disappointed and I don’t recommend seeing this film in theaters.
Matt Damon = Paul Safranek
Kristen Wiig = Audrey Safranek
Christoph Waltz = Dusan
Hong Chau = Gong Jiang
- General Concept
This film felt like a fusion of Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory and The Borrowers. To put it simply, a couple scientists believe the solution to all the environmental issues with our world is to shrink everyone down to a few millimeters high. After the discovery of the shrinking formula, communities are built and people start shrinking themselves down one by one. Most people’s motives are pure, to save the environment, but then you start to discover some of the other people’s motives that are not so selfless.
The general concept of the film is really interesting, and I believe they had a lot to work with. It was a great commentary on our modern world and the environmental and socioeconomic issues we face today.
The type of humor used is very dry and absurd at times, but there were moments that I could not stop laughing. I was laughing uncontrollably when Paul and Audry Safranek go through the shrinking process. I’m lucky I saw this at the outdoor theater in Telluride, because I don’t think many other audiences would have laughed with me. When Neil Patrick Harris and Jason Sudeikis came on screen I got a glimmer of hope that they could help take this film to the next level, but unfortunately they weren’t on screen for very long.
- Incoherent Story
This movie is all over the place, and I don’t even think it knew what it wanted to be. Director, Alexander Payne was trying to make several statements while being distracted with story telling.
This film tried to build a house, and when they had finished building the foundation, they took the rest of the pieces and scattered them around the lot. Instead of building on the first quarter of the film (foundation), Downsizing tried to make other random statements and introduced undeveloped characters without developing the already existing characters.
I wouldn’t recommend this movie to my readers. Downsizing broke many story telling rules and left me wanting those 2 hours of my life back. I rate it a 6.1/10 and if you must see it, don’t spend full price.