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  • Writer's pictureRob Ervin

Don Reviews "Amsterdam"

Award Season is upon us with those films considered to be “academy darlings” with that certain director, cast, or look. To my amazement, so many of those films are not great mainstream movies that the average moviegoer rushes out to see. For me, “Amsterdam” is the first of these in 2022.

Directed by a guy who is no stranger to awards in David O. Russell (American Hustle), this cast includes Christian Bale, Margot Robbie, John David Robinson, Chris Rock, Taylor Swift, Rami Malek, and Robert De Niro. It’s the 1930s in New York where two WWI vets in doctor Burt Berendsen (Bale) and attorney Harold Woodman (Washington) are hired by Liz Meeks (Swift) to look into a recent death of a political figure. In the process, another murder happens with the two being looked at for it. As the quest for the truth happens, they end up involved in one of the craziest storylines in our history.

It is pretty easy to see from the paragraph above that this film has an incredible all-star. There will be talk of nominations here, but I honestly did not find the performances that great overall. I would be more interested to see if the nominations come from set and costume design as those were pitch-perfect and set the right tone.

Here is where I am conflicted; with a great script, it just simply goes on too long! At about two hours and fifteen minutes, I would have been OK if forty-five minutes were trimmed back with a lot of time jumping that put too much emphasis on the back stories of the characters. I even wondered if they accidentally forgot to edit the movie at all with as much that falls flat here. It is like going into a high-end dessert shop and ordering a very appetizing piece of cake form the display cooler and when you bite into it, it was made of salt instead of sugar. I will barely recommend “Amsterdam” by using your DVR to record it off a cable service, so when you watch it on playback, you can take the many breaks needed to watch it.

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