'Downsizing' Assessment: Matt Damon Satire Spreads Itself Too Skinny

For a film about shrinking people to avoid wasting the surroundings, “Downsizing” is somewhat too large.

Director Alexander Payne, the visionary behind “Nebraska,” “Sideways” and “Election,” clearly had a grandiose imaginative and prescient. His cinematic assertion covers environmental messages, midlife crises, wealth disparity, unlawful immigration and gives goofy comedy.

There’s simply an excessive amount of materials to do anybody facet justice. And it takes 45 minutes of exposition to get to the center of the premise.

That premise? Much less is extra. Norwegian scientists develop a course of to miniaturize human beings like Shrinky Dinks to decrease mankind’s drain on pure sources. For like Paul (Damon) and Audrey Safranek (Kristen Wiig), “downsizing” gives the prospect to stay giant on a decrease value of residing.

However the change isn’t fairly as good as pictured within the brochures for the gilded dollhouse group of “Leisure Land” — a spot populated by quirky denizens together with Serbian fixer (Christoph Waltz) and Vietnamese dissident turned cleansing woman (Hong Chau).

Payne, who co-wrote the script, actually offers audiences so much to ponder — and so much to eyeball, courtesy of director of pictures Phedon Papamichael. However the movie wanders as aimlessly by way of this world as his wishy-washy protagonist.

Damon’s everyman actually might be any man. And lots of the stellar forged are simply wasted: Laura Dern, the star of Payne’s “Citizen Ruth,” actually simply stops in lengthy sufficient to attract a shower.

However to offer credit score the place credit score is due, that is an unique film about Lilliputians that has large aspirations. In a multiplex filled with sequels and retreads “Downsizing” does stand out. A lot of Payne’s political satire does hit the mark and hit it properly.

Nonetheless, it doesn’t take a magnifying glass to identify the movie’s imperfections.

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