A Life of Film + [2012]

Wrong (2012)

This is Quentin Dupieux's follow up to Rubber. It is a bit good. Not unlike Rubber, Wrong revels in subverting expectations and plays with tropes just as much as it does with its audience. Whether you can sit through that type of malarkey and enjoy yourself is pretty subjective which is why I'm hesitant to wholeheartedly recommend it, and unfortunately it also shares a lot of the pitfalls that I encountered with Rubber; there are a lot of moments of pure inspiration, it's just that these are sandwiched between sequences of relative mediocrity. I say relative, which is important, as Wrong is anything but - what I'm trying to get at is that Wrong has a lot of highs, and indeed they are quite brilliant, which draw a hell of a lot of attention to the plateaus. Damned if you do, damned if you don't, I guess. One thing that this one has that Rubber didn't is a real human element to it. It's about some dude looking for his missing dog, and there are a lot of small touches in there that make you genuinely care about him. The film moves along at a brisk pace which I really appreciated - with works like these, especially where the writer/director also undertakes a lot of other roles it's easy for a film to screech to a halt in order to satisfy somebody's egotistic need for self indulgence. I'm feeling a rant coming on (I've seen a little too much pompous arthouse shit recently) so I'll try to digress. And no, the irony is not lost on me. So anyway, this dude, looking for his dog, and you care. And it's funny! Partly from the skillful use of deadpan, partly from some exceptionally entertaining performances (Master Chang who is outrageous and subtle all at once, the gardener's ridiculous accent, the dude's neighbour's quiet desperation are just some of the highlights) and the pure, unashamed lack of common sense or logic bring Dupieux's strange scenarios to life with surprising comic force and a tangible dramatic undercurrent. If the above sounds like something you might not hate, then by all means give this one a chance. I know that a lot of people will almost be immediately turned off by one element of this film or another, or they may not appreciate being made fun of or scoffed at so they will scoff at the film in return, but that'd be a real shame because rolling with the punches is part of the charm here, indeed, one of the attractions. Things happen. Characters come in, do some stuff, and then go. The soundtrack drones on with foreboding or nonchalance and the alarm clock goes from 7:59 to 7:60. Why? No reason.