Toronto Buzz: ‘Foxcatcher’ Reviewed, Plus ‘The Theory of

THE SCENE

Pictured Above: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones and director James Marsh receive a standing ovation following the premiere of The Theory of Everything.

Pictured Below: Finally, a place to work out all those film festival issues…

WHAT CRITICS ARE TWEETING ABOUT…

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING (in theaters November 7)

One-liner: A biopic about the life of Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) and the relationship he had with his wife, Jane (Felicity Jones).


 


 

OUR THOUGHTS ON…

FOXCATCHER (in theaters November 14)

Based on the real-life story of the crippling, demented relationship between an Olympic wrestler and the American mulimillionaire who paid for his companionship, Foxcatcher is, like my tweet above claims, a film that most definitely creeps up on you like a drug that doesn’t want to let go. A surefire Oscar contender that should secure multiple nominations (especially for its performances), Foxcatcher is, at its core, about the risks, rewards and consequences of wanting to be great.

Yes, everything you’ve heard about Steve Carell’s performance is right on the money. As John du Pont, a member of the wealthy and influential du Pont family, Carell sinks into a performance that will change the way you look at the actor — mainly because he’s unrecognizable as this super-wealthy hermit desperately craving success and notoriety after living in his mother’s shadow his whole life. Du Point goes searching for purpose in the sport of wrestling, of which he knows little about, but when you have his kind of money, there’s no earning — there’s just buying.

Lots of buying. So he throws a ton of cash at Olympic hopeful (and former gold medal winner) Mark Schultz (Channing Tatum), offering him a chance to live and train on his family’s sprawling Foxcatcher ranch, with du Pont not just acting as his investor, but also his coach, his mentor, his best friend and father figure. The offer pulls Schultz away from his more famous gold-winning older brother Dave (Mark Ruffalo), but having lived in his brother’s shadow for way too long, the younger Schultz jumps at the chance to earn a lot of money, sure, but also respect on his own terms… and another gold medal. 

With the creepy, talentless and self-nicknamed “Eagle” by his side, Schultz begins to lose his way, and when du Pont convinces the older Schultz to come to his rescue and help train his emotional mess of a brother, things take an even darker turn for the worse. 

As du Pont, Carell demands your attention in a completely different way than you’re used to — and while the film offers pockets of humor, it’s always of the uncomfortable kind. Both Tatum and Ruffalo also deliver some of the best performances of their careers as a pair of brothers who’ve managed to achieve greatness on the mat, but never off it. And when all is said and done, Foxcatcher will gut-punch your heart and wrestle its way onto your list of favorite movies of the year.

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