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Murray phones it in

  • Dec 4, 2013
Rating:
+2
A man receives an anonymous letter informing him he is the father of a 19-year old son, so he sets off on a journey to visit his old girlfriends to see which one wrote the letter.

Bill Murray stars in this movie which is, at times, funny, pathetic, and shocking but mostly just boring. His character is an unappealing, solitary man who shows no interest or emotion; Murray pretty much phones in his performance, so underplaying his role that I wondered why he bothered at all. It's an intriguing premise that goes absolutely nowhere and the ending feels like the writer just ran out of ideas and stopped writing.

This is lazy filmmaking that tries to be arty but is just self-indulgent. Recommended only for those who aren't tired of Bill Murray's poker-face act.

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More Broken Flowers reviews
review by . May 11, 2009
This is a movie where you wait for something to happen and nothing ever does! What's worse is that the ending did not resolve the story. Bill Murray as a kind of loser who receives an unsigned note from an old girlfriend claiming that he is the father of her child. Murray seeks out 4 old girlfriends to find out who might have sent it. The director tries to be cute by having the daughter of one of the women (named Lolita of course) walk around naked in front of him. This was supposed to be the comedy …
review by . February 03, 2009
Pros: scenery, auxillary actors     Cons: Bill Murray, boring movie     The Bottom Line:   “And you can send me dead flowers every morning  Send me dead flowers by the mail”  ~Mick Jagger & Keith Richards     Don Johnston, a confirmed bachelor, has been dumped by yet another woman. Although he appears affluent, rich through something he did with computers, he remains alone and friendless except …
review by . September 12, 2007
Although the movie itself is interesting, well performed, engaging and mostly excellent, it just fails at the end. I was left wanting for a real ending
review by . October 13, 2006
Life is mysterious. Sometimes bombshells shake us up. Life seems to be a run toward fulfillment with expectations that frustrate our deepest desires. Such is the quandry for Don Johnston (Bill Murray) who is a solitary middle-aged bachelor. His live in lover, Sherry (Julie Delpy) leaves him at the beginning. He seems slightly startled out of his orbit, but her complaints provide the crux of his situation. "You're never going to change," she complains. "I don't want to be with an over-the-hill Don …
review by . June 25, 2006
This is a movie where you wait for something to happen and nothing ever does! What's worse is that the ending did not resolve the story. Bill Murray as a kind of loser who receives an unsigned note from an old girlfriend claiming that he is the father of her child. Murray seeks out 4 old girlfriends to find out who might have sent it. The director tries to be cute by having the daughter of one of the women (named Lolita of course) walk around naked in front of him. This was supposed to be the comedy …
review by . January 07, 2006
Jim Jarmusch continues his exploration of the human plight with BROKEN FLOWERS, a story he both wrote and directed, and this time he examines the psyche and the consequences of the Don Juan complex. In doing so he offers a quiet meditation about choices and their reverberations and leaves many thoughts open-ended, a definite tribute to the intelligence of his viewers and followers.    Don Johnston (Bill Murray) is a middle aged bachelor who has devoted his life to being a success …
review by . August 29, 2005
posted in Movie Hype
Near the end of this film, a young man who might be Don Johnston's (Bill Murray's) son asks for a bit of philosophical wisdom from a fellow traveler. What he gets (see the title for this review) is not original but probably appropriate for one who gets described by almost everyone else as a "Don Juan." That is, of course, the idea behind the famous romancer: that romantic love and sex are all about the here and now (that is why romantic love and marriage are such uneasy "bed partners": the best …
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Bill Murray gives yet another simple, seemingly effortless, yet illuminating performance in Jim Jarmusch's Broken Flowers. Don Johnston (Murray,Lost in Translation,Rushmore) receives an anonymous letter telling him that he has a 19 year old son who's looking for him. Don only decides to investigate at the prompting of his neighbor Winston (the indispensable Jeffrey Wright,Shaft,Basquiat), who not only tracks down the current addresses of the possible mothers, he plans Don's entire trip down to the rental cars. Almost against his will, Don finds himself knocking at the doors of four very different women (Sharon Stone,The Quick and the Dead; Frances Conroy,Six Feet Under; Jessica Lange,Sweet Dreams; and Tilda Swinton,The Deep End) who were once his lovers. Part road movie, part detective story, part existential meditation,Broken Flowersis even more minimalist than most Jarmusch movies (Stranger Than Paradise,Dead Man,Mystery Train)--anyone looking for an easy resolution should look elsewhere. But for anyone willing to let a movie be a poem as much as a story--i.e., let it observe behavior without explaining it--Broken Flowerswill offer a wealth of mysteries, gestures, and Bill Murray's soulful eyes. It's a movie that's wonderfully eloquent about what's not being said.--Bret Fetzer
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