Barney’s Version (2010)

I’ve been a Paul Giamatti fan for quite some time now, probably since I saw him way back in The Negotiator.  He’s kind of like his co-star in that movie, Samuel L. Jackson, in that he acts in a tonne of movies, and rarely delivers anything less than a workman performance.  Dude’s a professional, a character actor that through his own sheer talent has overachieved far higher than anyone would have expected in his career.  So I try to watch as much of his stuff as possible, though I still need to get around to Cold Souls.  Seemed like a movie you had to be in the mood for.

Anyways, this movie is based off of Canadian author Mordecai Richler’s book of the same name, and based on how much I liked it, I may have to search out that novel.  Giamatti stars as the titular Barney, a Jewish TV producer who has led a somewhat crazy life.  The way the movie was shot, the flashbacks and such, well until I read the Wiki entry for it, I was sure that it was based on a real person.  I thought it was a biopic of some Canadian that I had never heard of.  That’s not a rare thing either, as I am Canadian and celebrate our culture, but if it’s CBC-related I tend to get bored real fucking fast.

As a Canadian, I felt that it had a very distinctive Canadian feel to it, and that’s not something you see everyday in movies.  The acting is tremendous throughout, as is the story, which – because of Barney’s nature – you’re never really sure about.  It also features one of the most real and touching love stories I’ve seen depicted in a long time, between Barney and the lovely Miriam (Rosamund Pike).  Definitely something I’d watch again, and I’d recommend it to others as well.

4 / 5


About SkoochXC
Long-time blogger, Canadian, cine-snark-aphile, Tweeter and generally lonely hearted guy.

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