Directed by: Fernando Meirelles
Starring: Rachel Weisz, Jude Law and Anthony Hopkins
Running Time: 110mins
A dramatic thriller that weaves together the stories of an array of people from dispErate social backgrounds through their intersecting relationships.
Michael Daly (Jude Law) is a very successful businessman who is looking for a little something whilst on a business trip to Vienna. On this trip he arranges to meet an escort, though things don’t turn out the way he expected… On the other side of the world in London, Rose Daly (Rachel Weisz) , Michael’s wife, is in the throes of a passionate affair with her much younger colleague, though as much as she is enjoying it, she wants to end it.
With relationships like these intertwining between numerous character exchanges in cities such as Paris, Vienna, Colorado and London, each one a journey into their body and soul, will they all find what they seek?
360, based on the novel La Ronde by Arthur Schnitzler, is a collection of characters and situations that lead on from one to another. Though all of these characters are from different backgrounds, both socially and geographically, there is a re-occurring theme throughout. Each character has either cheated, been cheated or involved with another who is in a relationship (all except one who has the desire to cheat but does not actually carry out the deed).
At times the audience feels sympathy for a character, especially in the sequence involving Anthony Hopkins, a father who is searching for his missing daughter. Though the start of this sequence is touching, the film’s underlying theme brings the viewer a reality that may question their original sympathy. And yet, as the sequence plays out, the character is brought full circle.
This is the main strength of 360 and a special recognition should go to Director Fernando Meirelles, whose previous works include the stunning City of God, on weaving such intricate characters into a fairly well structured plot. However, the film suffers from a sledgehammer like edit at times, one shot virtually slamming into the next shot in a different scene. This often comes across as either censorship or just lazy editing.
Whilst this film does indeed contain a number of great actors, both male and female, they are mostly used sporadically throughout the film’s running time, though special mention should be given to Hopkins.
All in all, this is similar in narrative to the likes of Valentine’s Day and New Year’s Eve, though differently executed. The film deals more with the here and now and doesn’t touch on the why, perhaps to leave the viewer in a position where the why is not important.
That said, the European locations do look stunning with each city providing its own character on the screen, backed by a soundtrack that is not obtrusive but gently flows with the sequence; ranging from joviality to menace in the space of a few minutes.
360 may not be perfection in the multi-character/situation, but it certainly has more depth and style than previous offerings in this genre, and that definitely makes it a positive experience.
Thank you to QFT (Queen’s Film Theatre) for this press screening. For a list of their upcoming releases ranging from classics to documentaries, please click the link.