Mammoth

"Good"

Mammoth Review


Darkly honest and emotionally involving, this ensemble drama cleverly examines the impact of modern life on children through several distinctly different characters. It's not particularly original, but it's still gripping.

In New York, gaming expert Leo (Garcia Bernal) is happily married to surgeon Ellen (Williams). While they work, their young daughter Jackie (Nyweide) is tended to by their Filipina nanny Gloria (Necesito), who's working to raise money to help her two young sons (Nicdao and Delos Santos) back home. Leo's latest business trip takes him to Thailand, where he has some time to kill waiting for his business partner (McCarthy) to make a deal, so he heads to a remote beach, where be befriends a lively young hooker (Srinikornchot).

Even though the central characters are all part of each others' lives, their day-to-day experiences are faced alone. And this causes a series of crises that they never properly share with each other. Some of this is naivete, other moments involve personal failings and some simply bring raw emotional (or physical) pain that can only be soothed in the presence of a loved one.

Yes, it's a pretty wrenching drama, and from the start Moodysson builds the tone using heavy premonitions that we're heading for an impending tragedy or something frighteningly close to it. But he shoots the film with a sunny, colourful style that sharply contrasts with this growing sense of unease. And the cast is relaxed and very natural, with Williams delivering an especially brittle performance that really catches our sympathies.

The title is a reference to the transience of human existence: will we someday be extinct like the mammoth is? And there is also the lingering question that, since we essentially go through life on our own, is our idealised sense of family a myth? Some of this is a bit heavy-handed (such as when Gloria buys her son a basketball in New York that was made in the Philippines) and other scenes feel preachy, including a pointed lesson in global poverty. Altogether, it feels somewhat random and over-reminiscent of Babel. But in the small moments, it packs a powerful punch.



Mammoth

Facts and Figures

Genre: Dramas

Run time: 125 mins

In Theaters: Friday 23rd January 2009

Distributed by: IFC Films

Production compaines: Sci-Fi Channel

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 49%
Fresh: 20 Rotten: 21

IMDB: 6.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Lars Jonsson

Starring: as Dr. Frank Abernathy, as Jack Abernathy, as Simon Abernathy, Constantin Draganescu as Gordon, as Squirrelly, Charles Carroll as Sheriff Marion Morrison, Mark Irvingsen as Deputy Dino, David Kallaway as Deputy Bud, as Agent Powers, Andrew Peter Marin as Floyd, Dan Radulescu as Moe the Monkey Man, Karen Parden Johnson as Gas Station Lady, Coca Bloos as Olive, Boris Petroff as Bruno, Marcus Lyle Brown as Agent Whitaker


Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation Movie Review

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation Movie Review

Writer-director Christopher McQuarrie brings a dark and gritty tone to this larger-than-life franchise. Along with...

Beyond the Reach Movie Review

Beyond the Reach Movie Review

With a spectacular setting and two solid actors on-screen, this thriller builds enough solid suspense...

Cub Movie Review

Cub Movie Review

At a time when horror movies seem to only want to make the audience jump,...

Inside Out Movie Review

Inside Out Movie Review

Those bright sparks at Pixar have done it again, taking a fiercely original approach to...

Advertisement
Southpaw Movie Review

Southpaw Movie Review

Slick direction and meaty performances may be enough for some viewers, but this boxing drama's...

Eden Movie Review

Eden Movie Review

Loose and impressionistic, this beautifully shot film traces the career of a DJ who pioneered...

The Gallows Movie Review

The Gallows Movie Review

Without a single moment of originality, this found-footage horror movie really deserves to be the...

Self/Less Movie Review

Self/Less Movie Review

An intriguing premise keeps the audience gripped for about 20 minutes before the movie runs...

Advertisement