Don’t Look Up [Grade: 92.5%]

Director: Adam McKay

Story By: Adam McKay & David Sirota

Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Rob Morgan, Mark Rylance, Cate Blanchett, Jonah Hill, & Timothée Chalamet

* * *

No lie, I was torn halfway through this film… but Act 3 and the ending made me appreciate the experience. 

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Below are my grades for key components in #DontLookUp that I find to be key in any story/film/series—Theme, Plot, Pacing, and Character (pertaining to arc/development &/or delivery). FYI: My A=95, A- =90, B=85, B-=80…etc. My D- =60 and my F=50

Additionally, I have added an entertainment factor scale to help you determine whether or not the film is something you’d be interested in taking time out of your weekend, evening, or day to watch. The scale range consists of: Worth the Watch/$$$, Interesting Enough (if looking for something new to start, OR experience is intentionally relevant to the genre and executed well–nothing more), Wait for Streaming, Don’t Rush, & Don’t Watch.

I have also added a few non-spoiling thoughts, wonderings, and comments as I watched the film to help give some rationale for my grades and entertainment scale.

* * *

Theme: A

Plot & Story: A

Pacing: B

Character: A

* * *

Entertainment Factors

General Public: Interesting Enough

Film Enthusiasts: Interesting Enough

Experience Seekers (via Visuals & Score): Don’t Watch

Social Satire Fans: Worth The Watch

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1. The messaging of this film was so well done and a much needed slap in the face for us, as it touches on the impact and consequences of being too social media/trending topic/celeb/influencer focused, dependent, and “cult-ish” vs knowing when to pay attention to, and follow instructions by, our experts regardless of clout. 

Chile…Adam and David read the US for filth. 😂😂👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👍🏾

2. I hardly recognized Cate Blanchett! Her scene with June… 😂

3. Ooop. Okay nakedness! 🙌🏾

4. There are 2 primary character appreciations I have for different reasons. First, Leonardo DiCaprio who gave a solid performance as this anxious, prescription-dependent professor and astronomer named Dr. Mindy.

Despite my small issue with how Dr.Mindy gets wrapped up in everything, I loved how his character controls the emotions of the story by actively going through a phase-like experience with the theme—getting sucked up in the hype and hoopla of this social media / trending topic / influencer lifestyle before coming back to reality. It is Dr. Mindy who partially shifted my appreciation for the film in Act 3. 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾

Next is Mark Rylance as this seemingly sedated, capitalistic tech tycoon named Peter Isherwell. I really didn’t think I was going to be so drawn to this character, but Mark Rylance’s performance was so entertaining and he didn’t even give too much (nor did he have that much screen time). It was definitely his commitment to the character in very moment that he had that I admired.  🙌🏾

5. WHY did he keep caller her “sir” or mixed in with “gentlemen.” 😩😂😂😂😂

6. Meryl was a HOOT! 😂😂😂

7. A PhD student and astronomer struggle to be taken seriously in the social climate of today when attempting to inform the world about a recently discovered, planet destroying comet headed straight for Earth in less than a year—This is Don’t Look Up.

I do appreciate a good satirical film, but there needs to be the right balance of seriousness and socially inspired silliness; and for the most part, Don’t Look Up met my personal criteria. 👍🏾

Act One does a great job with starting with the seriousness, using the style of the opening credits to give hints to not take this film too seriously, and then slowly introducing key characters like Hamish Patel and Johan Hill with certain comedic moments that helped complete the direction the film was not only taking, but also it’s tonality. 

Act Two gives space to our main characters being immersed in the fast paced, ruthless game of our current social climate that seems to be getting in the way of them trying to “save the world.”

Lastly, Act Three gives an oddly satisfying, albeit emotional, resolution to everything seen in Act Two based on what we know from Act One. 👍🏾👍🏾👍🏾

8. Speaking of Hamish Patel… 😍😍

9. This film has a runtime of a little over 130 minutes, and you honestly don’t feel it (unless you are watching between 3 and 5PM, and notice the sun going down LOL). But seriously, the film moves fast, and the performances keep you engaged. 

However, as mentioned when discussing characters, the film moves a little too fast in Act Two with Dr. Mindy new persona. On one hand, I appreciated the film moving him along, but then I feel like something could’ve been added to help make that transition a little more logical… 

Which then brings about a moment of film space that wasn’t as necessary in my opinion—the grocery store scene / meeting Yule. There was literally nothing interesting in that entire scene—even simply seeing Timothée…it’s not that big of a deal. 

He could’ve been introduced outside recognizing Kate as she’s taking a walk after the turn of events for her characters, near the alleys where his crew hang out… 🥴🤷🏾‍♂️


* * *

Overall #DontLookUp gives 2012 – meets Sorry To Bother You – meets Armageddon – meets Scandal – meets the Trump Administration Era

At one point while viewing, I said to myself, “I get it, but I don’t think this is 2 hours I’d want to watch again…” Then when the ending happened, that all changed. I’d definitely watch it again. 

The message is really important, especially for what’s going on now, and the cast and performances are just fun and entertaining to watch. 

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