The Beach Boys songwriter is portrayed by Paul Dano and John Cusack in this moving biopic.
The full story of The Beach Boys legend Brian Wilson is finally hitting the movies in the form of Bill Pohlad's challenging, life-spanning biopic 'Love & Mercy' which stars Paul Dano and John Cusack as the respective younger and older Wilsons.
Paul Dano stars as a young Brian Wilson in 'Love & Mercy'
While being responsible for writing one of the most important rock albums in history, 1966's 'Pet Sounds', Brian Wilson was at the most fragile stage of his life during that decade. Dragged down mentally and emotionally by the stress of song-writing he took comfort in drug use and was subsequently forced to seek a range of psychological treatments. As tensions within the band grew, he became more and more erratic and lost in a confusing world of hallucinations and psychosis. Paul Dano plays Wilson's enthusiastic younger self, while John Cusack takes on the role of the broken man that came decades after. Paul Giamatti also makes an appearance as Wilson's crooked psychologist Eugene Landy who fed him excessively high dosages of medicative drugs and prevented him from seeing his partner Melinda Ledbetter (who is played by Elizabeth Banks).
In the mid-1960s, The Beach Boys were at the top of their game. Having released ten classic albums, a young songwriter and leader of the band, Brian Wilson (Paul Dano), was preparing to create the greatest album in history. His aggressive pursuit of the perfect sound for the band's eleventh studio album, 'Pet Sounds', had a negative effect on his psychological well-being. Almost two decades later in the 1980s, Wilson (John Cusack) is trapped in his own mind, sedated by medication and a troubled psychiatrist. But a young woman, Melinda Ledbetter (Elizabeth Banks), believes that she can restore him to the great man he once was, through a mixture of Love and Mercy.
Continue: Love & Mercy - Teaser Trailer
The veteran actor spoke candidly of the struggles and risks young stars are faced with in the movie industry.
If any young actor is dreaming of becoming a big star in Hollywood, it would be a good idea to not listen to what veteran movie star John Cusack has to say about the place as he recently took aim on everything that is wrong with the film industry today.
Cusack compares Hollywood to a "whorehouse"
The 48 year-old actor spoke very candidly of life in the limelight in an interview with The Guardian to promote his new movie 'Map to the Stars,' and the comparisons he made with Hollywood are rather shocking.
Continue reading: John Cusack Brands Hollywood A "Whorehouse" Where "People Go Mad"
Following four Academy Award nominations, could 'Maps To The Stars' be the film which finally earns Julianne Moore her Oscar?
Julianne Moore is one of the greatest actresses never to have won an Oscar, even though she's been nominated four times and has a mantle full of SAG statuettes, Emmys, Golden Globes and critics' group awards.
Julianne Moore appears opposite Mia Wasikowska in 'Maps To The Stars'
But that could change this year with her Cannes-winning performance in David Cronenberg's Maps to the Stars, a viciously astute attack on the myth of the Hollywood dream. Even the critics who hated the film were mesmerised by Moore's performance as a middle-aged actress desperately clinging to her fame.
Continue reading: 'Maps To The Stars' May Finally Earn Moore An Oscar
As it explores Hollywood's inbred underbelly, this film becomes increasingly deranged and also rather dark and creepy, but it's so fiercely entertaining that it's impossible to look away from the screen. With razor-sharp performances, a brutally witty script by Bruce Wagner and snaky direction from David Cronenberg, the film is perhaps too knowing as it explores a group of fiercely ambitious people who will stop at nothing to get what they want.
Things kick off as Agatha (Mia Wasikowska) arrives in Los Angeles and is collected by chauffeur Jerome (Robert Pattinson), who is also of course an aspiring screenwriter and actor. Focussed and determined, Agatha visits the ruins of a Hollywood Hills home before using a friendship with Carrie Fisher to get a job as an assistant to acclaimed actress Havana Segrand (Julianne Moore). Facing middle age, Havana is desperate for a comeback role in a remake of the movie that made her mother a star. Meanwhile, 13-year-old teen pin-up Benjie (Evan Bird) has completed rehab and is ready to act again, encouraged by his manager mother (Olivia Williams) and self-help guru dad (John Cusack), who are unnerved when they hear that Agatha is back in town. Clearly everyone has a secret that can jeopardise their career paths. And they're connected in ways no one wants to acknowledge.
The knotted mess of the plot is carefully unpicked over the course of the film, which only makes everything that much more intense and nasty. While it's blackly funny, the movie's overall tone is extremely grim, as these wealthy stars are crippled by emptiness and desperation. They're also willing to do just about anything to get ahead, from celebrating someone else's misfortune to blatantly lying about their pasts.
Continue reading: Maps to the Stars Review