I was really tempted to write just a two word review for Cosmopolis: “Don’t bother.” But then I thought I should probably explain myself. You’re either going to find this movie a pretentious, claustrophobic slog through hell or an artful commentary on contemporary capitalist excess. You can guess where I stand. I hated it.

This is director David Cronenberg’s adaptation of the 2003 novel by Don DeLillo. Robert Pattinson, trying hard to shed his teen vampire heartthrob image, plays Eric Packer, a self-absorbed 28-year old master-of-the-universe type. Packer is intent on making a trip across town to get his hair cut on a day when the President is in the city. So most of the movie is spent in the back of his stretch limo as it makes its way through the Manhattan streets at a glacial pace. Ensconced safely in his high-tech automotive bubble he glides by as riots rage outside and inside he watches his considerable fortune begin to crumble because the yuan is not behaving the way he predicted it would. Along the way, he is visited by various financial advisers, lovers and a doctor who performs a prostate exam on the go.

Things get slightly more interesting when Paul Giamatti enters as Benno Levin, a former colleague of Packer’s who wants to kill him and is clearly psychotic. But he doesn’t show up until the final 20 minutes of the movie, and it’s an excruciating journey to get to that point.

Unless you’re into art films, I would most definitely skip this one. So I’d be interested in getting Arty Chick’s opinion on it. I’d also say it’s a definite no-go for young Robert Pattinson fans who want to see him in everything he does. It’s rated R for a reason and frankly, the whole thing could be traumatizing to young minds.

COSMOPOLIS – TRAILER (VO) from Cosmopolis on Vimeo.

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