Forty Shades Of Blue

on September 30, 2005 by Ray Greene
Hooboy. In this deliberately-paced snoozer of a film, an aging and womanizing country music star (Rip Torn), his beautiful Russian mistress and their two-year-old toddler welcome the mature, hunky and troubled son from the music star's previous marriage into their home. Exactly what you think might happen next happens--very slowly. So how to explain the fact that this is the movie this year's Sundance jury chose to award its top American dramatic prize? Who knows? Who cares? "Forty Shades of Blue" is festival bait for sure, with visuals reminiscent of Cassavetes and Altman and a mirthless tone that wants to overwhelm the viewer with the Seriousness of It All. But despite Torn's always lively presence and a stunning performance from Russian actress Dina Korzun, this is predictable soap opera stuff, served up with such hamfisted self-importance that patience chokes on even a small portion. For acting and cinematography junkies, there's a lot here to recommend. For those who want a movie to move at something other than the pace of rock eroding, there are definitely better ways to spend 107 minutes. Starring Rip Torn, Dina Korzun and Darren Burrows. Directed by Ira Sachs. Written by Michael Rohatyn and Ira Sachs. Produced by Margot Bridger, Ira Sachs, Mary Bing Jawl Nga and Donald Rosenfeld. A Vitagraph release. Drama. Unrated. Running time: 107 min.
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