Customer Reviews


124 Reviews
5 star:
 (40)
4 star:
 (23)
3 star:
 (13)
2 star:
 (14)
1 star:
 (34)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The perfect antidote to Love Actually
It's really hard to understand a lot of the reviews that have categorically trashed the film here. I can appreciate that an older, or more sheltered, audience would maybe find the film a tad too raw and brutal to enjoy; I'm pretty sure that someone like my grandmother would have a minor stroke at some of the language used. Then again, maybe not... she's a...
Published on 21 Jan 2006

versus
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Talent 5 - ; Sum Of Its Parts - 0
Natalie Portman, Jude Law, Julia Roberts and Clive Owen are all brilliant actors and Mike Nichols almost always directs films that last forever in their emotional depth. (Check out his resume). Patrick Marber wrote the original stage play and it almost makes me want to seek it out in its truest form, as this film brought out nothing in me other than cynicism and dismay...
Published on 3 May 2005 by Martin A Hogan


‹ Previous | 1 213 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Talent 5 - ; Sum Of Its Parts - 0, 3 May 2005
By 
Martin A Hogan "Marty From SF" (San Francisco Bay Area) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
Natalie Portman, Jude Law, Julia Roberts and Clive Owen are all brilliant actors and Mike Nichols almost always directs films that last forever in their emotional depth. (Check out his resume). Patrick Marber wrote the original stage play and it almost makes me want to seek it out in its truest form, as this film brought out nothing in me other than cynicism and dismay. In fact, the main emotional themes seem to be neurotic passion, heartbreak, sadness, anger, evil vengeance, pathetic pleading, deception, and honesty to the point of brutality. Some may find this an interesting exploration of emotions mixed with complex personalities in confusing circumstances. Some call this entertainment, but I think all involved could have done much better. This is a very personal film and one that can only be interpreted by the viewer. I found it very, very bleak.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Pseuds' Corner, 17 Dec 2007
By 
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
I'm sorry but this is pretentious nonsense and somebody has to speak out!

I used to love (screenwriter) Patrick Marber in The Day Today and I thought his adaptation of Zoe Heller's 'Notes on a Scandal' was pretty good stuff, but this is just total dross and I can't believe anyone thinks otherwise. It's not like I spend my life watching Rambo films - name pretty much any poncey film and I've seen it twice and got the t-shirt - and I have absolutely nothing against the 'mature themes' that others have mentioned. But 'Closer' is in fact mind-bogglingly immature, like an erotic story written by a virgin. Tee hee, Natalie Portman is a stripper, Clive Owen surfs dirty websites at work, everyone jumps in and out of bed with each other... Aren't we big and aren't we clever? Well, no, actually, and dialogue such as 'I love you. I need a p*ss' is like something out of a sixth-form play.

No surprises for guessing that this was, in fact, adapted from Marber's own stage play. Everything has the ring of artificiality, and the dialogue is horribly arch and self-satisfied. The whole thing is one big Neil La Bute rip-off. Wisps of character drifting about saying unlikely things in sneery voices and swearing a bit to show how marvellously cutting edge it all is. (The funny thing is, I kind of like Neil La Bute. There's an air of originality to his work, no matter how annoying. But sloppy seconds are an entirely different matter.) Clive Owen is probably the worst offender. He can barely deliver a line here! He's so awful I almost want to cry. I hope Julia Roberts worked for free because she's barely in it. Even when she's on screen you don't notice she's there. She has one scene (with Clive Owen unfortunately) where she shows some emotional depth, but other than that she's the priciest wallpaper you're ever likely to see. As for Jude Law, they seem to have cobbled his role together from four or five different films. I can't even begin to describe his character(s). Kudos to Natalie Portman for being the least annoying of the four. It probably helps that she's luminously beautiful, and male fans will no doubt be giddy with glee watching her lapdance for Clive Owen. It seems such a waste, though, to go to the trouble of disrobing for such embarrassing pap. Is it every actress's secret desire to get nekkid? I don't understand it. No doubt the closing scene is intended to be poignant, but actually it's just an excuse to watch Portman's rack bouncing about in a skimpy top.

'Pretentious? Moi?' That line wasn't actually in the film, but it should have been. Just because it's long and complicated and un-involving doesn't make it art. If you want an intelligent, edgy film that actually says something about the human condition, try 'The Dream Life of Angels'. La Bute's 'In the Company of Men' and 'The Shape of Things' are both vaguely irritating but still a safer bet than wasting two hours of your life watching 'Closer'. This is a horrible film! A pseud in La Bute's clothing.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The perfect antidote to Love Actually, 21 Jan 2006
By A Customer
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
It's really hard to understand a lot of the reviews that have categorically trashed the film here. I can appreciate that an older, or more sheltered, audience would maybe find the film a tad too raw and brutal to enjoy; I'm pretty sure that someone like my grandmother would have a minor stroke at some of the language used. Then again, maybe not... she's a game old bird, come to think of it. But if you recognise the world this film depicts with ruthless honesty, I think you'll find it resonant, at least on some level, and ultimately very thought-provoking indeed.
Basically, I think the major problem with a lot of the most viciously negative reviewers here is that they seem to be lacking a sense of humour. I found Closer to be a very dark, very bitingly funny black comedy. It's not easy to get me laughing during a movie, but I really did howl in parts of this one. But then, an instant later, one of the leads would make an unutterably cruel remark, or a profound comment, or a tragic admission, and that would act like a sharp blow to the stomach, and the laughter would dissolve into something a lot more thoughtful and poignant.
I'm not saying this is a perfect film, though. There were quite a few lines in the script that I felt I'd heard before in some other hackneyed soap opera of angsty relationships, such as 'Please don't do this' etc. Maybe it's because a lot of these lines were delivered without any real emotional oomph or imagination by Julia Roberts, and sometimes by Jude Law. Both of their performances were generally solid, but there were two particular scenes focused on both their characters which did fall very flat. Thank God for Clive Owen's performance- he was riveting. Natalie Portman also gave a fiendishly difficult role her all, and she was equally mesmerising for the most part.
I didn't find the ending of the movie crushingly bleak at all. It was refreshingly real... and I don't mean that as a euphemism for downright depressing; it was actually pretty comforting to witness things conclude as you felt it was fitting that they should. Above all things, Closer is a ruthlessly modern picture. That doesn't make it sound too appetising, I know, maybe it'd be more accurate to call it genuinely, unabashedly contemporary and honest. If you've had any kind of a patchy history to your love life, if you've lived a little and have some experience of the dating/mating game during the last couple of years, I have no doubt that you'll find a lot in this film that is familiar and well-observed. You've got to know the environment depicted, on some level, to be able to appreciate the satire, I suppose.
So if you haven't seen the film and are in two minds whether or not to buy a copy, I'd say go for it. It's a hauntingly memorable fable with an exceptional performance from Clive Owen, razor sharp satire throughout, and crikey- it'll make you think and laugh and wince and laugh and think some more.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


50 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautifully dark study of love, 5 April 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
This film is based on the brilliant play of the same name, and concerns themes of love, deception and betrayal.
I think some of the viewers who have left comments on the website have largely missed the point. It is certainly not a romantic comedy (and how you would presume this from the tag-line I don't quite understand, 'If you believe in love at first sight, you never stop looking'). Nor is it badly acted at all, and I think the language is effective precisely because it is so real. It is not a pretty tale, it's a true one about love in London in the nineties. And believe me I was there...
It is a simple story of meetings and break-ups, a brutal tale of love, the precise opposite to a rom-com. This film considers the other side of 'happy ever after', of how love turns out in a not-so-perfect world.
The film is made up of a series of duologues, wonderfully acted, particularly by Owen and Portman, who truly shine in their roles. All give remarkably exposing performances, and I was really impressed by the lack of 'Hollywood glamour' in the film. Yes, all the stars are stunning, but all present very raw characters - and that is precisely what it is about. Sex is mis-presented as love, and love as sex, and both can be thrown about easily.
This is not an easy film to watch. It hurts, some of the dialogue is genuinely brutal, but overall I think it's a good adaptation of the stage play. If you want to watch a nice romantic comedy, buy 'Maid in Manhatten'. But if you're after something a bit edgier and more true, then this is much closer to the bone.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nasty, 28 Sep 2005
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
Nasty people doing nasty things too each other.
By the end you would be hard pushed to actually care about any of the characters.
A pointless piece of film waisting four talented actors.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars well worth your time!, 20 May 2005
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
this film is an excellent character study of the human condition we call love. It shows us how paranoia and the feeling that we must know every little detail can eat away at someone and cause relationships to desolve. I was really unsure about this movie as i thought it was going to be over long and too depressing. I have never been so wrong about anything, the film flys by and the performances are career bests from all involved. Especially Natalie Portman, who steals the show as alice.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Why this fim divides people so much, 14 Nov 2010
By 
Legal Vampire (Buckinghamshire, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Closer [DVD] (DVD)
I see that this film really divides Amazon reviewers, so it is possible you will like it more than I did. I shall try to give an idea of what it is like and hope this helps you to judge whether this is a film for you or not.

I saw Closer in its original form as a stage play in London - it was OK, but not quite living up to the recommendations of some theatre critics.

Mostly because the film version has Julia Roberts and Natalie Portman in it, I took a chance and bought the DVD when it was avaialble for 3 so there was little to lose. I had liked Julia Roberts in several other films, and have never forgotten Natalie Portman's late childhood performance in 'Leon', but mostly lost track of her since then.

'Closer' is the story of how two mainly middle class unmarried couples (both living in London, both Anglo-American in the film version) meet and get tangled up with each other when the members of one couple have affairs with the members of the other.

For a time they swap partners and after various breakups eventually swap back again. Ultimately, one couple stay together.

In the end, the most selfish of the four main characters spitefully sabotages the relationship between two of the others. It turns out one character has concealed their identity throughout so that when they decide to leave there is no chance of their former partner finding them and trying to win them back. Although the ending is sad for some of the characters, this is not a tragedy nor is the tone sad throughout.

The film involves quite frequent discussions of sex, rather than explicit sex scenes as such, although there is a lap dancing club scene.

In other words, sort of a soap opera with artisitic and intellectual pretensions.

If that is the sort of thing that you like, then this is a well shot and well acted version of it, especially memorable being Natalie Portman as the character Alice Ayres.

Before looking at other people's reviews here on Amazon, I had thought 'Closer' might drastically divide the audience. I was right about that. On the other hand I had thought the division of opinion might be entirely on male/ female lines, with all women liking it and no men, but I was wrong about that, and there are many exceptions both ways.

Overall, while some people will like this film, I was disappointed. I would have liked more substance beyond just "will so and so's relationship survive this or that infidelity?" which seems to me is all this film is about.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Didnt like this film, 18 May 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Closer [DVD] (DVD)
I didnt really like this film, found it the most depressing film ever. I wouldnt watch it again I doubt. I just didnt like the story I guess.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Are there people out there who are really like this?, 10 Jun 2005
By 
A. Gilmour "Allan G" (Glasgow, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
First and foremost, I would like to say that I loved the movie. However, it does not compare to the stage version that I seen a few years back at the Edinburgh fringe. One fundamental would be the Jude Law and Julia Roberts characters, I felt they relied far too much on their "Star Quality", especially Roberts, I think she thought "I know, I think I'm going to turn up today and say the lines... and thats it". There was no character, no pathos. Law faired slightly better, but only slightly. Whereas in the stage version, you get the characters raw and you can read them more clearly than you can on screen, or maybe the actors I seen on stage were just better. When watching the movie you can tell that it is a stage play. The sets could easily be on stage and the script has play written all over it. For me the movie belongs to Portman and Owen, who steal all scenes they are in, and the scenes with them together are electric with chemistry. You can tell that they actually prepared for the role. It is a great movie that, at points, makes you feel uncomfortable, because you do realise that this is in fact the world we live in, and people like this actually do exist. But do you still empathise with them... I do, kind of.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Both bewitching and unbearable, 7 Jan 2006
This review is from: Closer [DVD] [2004] [2005] (DVD)
The Main Feature: Is this love? Real love I mean. The sort that enchants and then repulses, that thoughtfully ensnares, then thoughtlessly rejects. Something that is at once all encompassing, yet somehow barely touchable. A fairytale always on the brink of melting into tragedy. For some it will be, for others it won't; and therein lies the power of Closer. Mike Nichols' film juxtaposes them all and then shoves them in your face, with unabashed honesty. It's wildly different to the 'love' we're normally fed in films, because all the uncomfortable and unpalatable bits are left it - and for that reason some people just won't like it. At some point most will ask whether they do or not. And for a few, that's just not something you should have to do in a movie - and they'll most probably switch off. This movie is made for the rest: who like a movie to challenge them a little, like to be left thinking at the end and once in a while don't mind staring reality in the face.

There are four main players: Anna (Julia Roberts) is a portrait photographer; Dan (Jude Law) an obituary writer; Larry (Clive Owen) a dermatologist and Alice (Natalie Portman), who is an American stripper. All put in adept, sometimes beguiling performances. Each inhabit their characters in different ways; adding another layer of intrigue to an already unusual tale. Nichols skillfully stirs together various scenes from their lives that pair them again and again with each other - and then without each other. If this is love, then it rises to the surface in many guises - comedy, tragedy, intimacy, hope, despair, vengeance - and you never know which is going to come next.

Overall Package/Extras: Disappointingly few extras - only a few trailers and a music video of Damien Rice's 'The Blower's Daughter'. A fairly strong song, but a distinctly average video. Just the sort of film where a Director's (and/or Playwright's) commentary would have been intriguing.

The one disk is packaged in a boring, standard plastic DVD case.

Verdict: Both bewitching and unbearable. A real audience divider. The DVD isn't worth buying for the Extras or if you're after a film that you'll want to watch repeatedly - because you just won't. One viewing is enough for Closer to get under your skin, if you let it. And you should - even if only once.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 213 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First
ARRAY(0xa3088a08)

This product

Closer
Closer by Mike Nichols (Blu-ray)
8.11
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews