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The Machinist [DVD] [2004]

4.2 out of 5 stars 147 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Aitana Sanchez-Gijon, John Sharian, Michael Ironside
  • Directors: Brad Anderson
  • Producers: Julio Fernández
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Tartan
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Aug. 2005
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (147 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0009MWAV6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,018 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Brooding psychological thriller, starring Christian Bale. Trevor Reznik (Bale) is a factory machine-operator who is suffering from crippling insomnia. His weight has plummeted, he suffers from hallucinations, and he finds himself unable to concentrate at work, leading to a horrific accident involving one of his co-workers. Ostracised from the other men at the factory, Reznik starts finding threatening notes and begins to fear that someone is trying to kill him. Is his paranoia part of his psychological breakdown, or is it possibly justified?

From Amazon.co.uk

As a bleak and chilling mood piece, The Machinist gets under your skin and stays there. Christian Bale threw himself into the title role with such devotion that he shed an alarming 63 pounds to play Trevor Reznik (talk about "starving artist"!), a factory worker who hasn't slept in a year. He's haunted by some mysterious occurrence that turned him into a paranoid husk, sleepwalking a fine line between harsh reality and nightmare fantasy--a state of mind that leaves him looking disturbingly gaunt and skeletal in appearance. (It's no exaggeration to say that Bale resembles a Holocaust survivor from vintage Nazi-camp liberation newsreels.) In a cinematic territory far removed from his 1998 romantic comedy Next Stop Wonderland, director Brad Anderson orchestrates a grimy, nocturnal world of washed-out blues and grays, as Trevor struggles to assemble the clues of his psychological conundrum. With a friendly hooker (Jennifer Jason Leigh) and airport waitress (Aitana Sánchez-Gijón) as his only stable links to sanity, Trevor reaches critical mass and seems ready to implode just as The Machinist reveals its secrets. For those who don't mind a trip to hell with a theremin-laced soundtrack, The Machinist seems primed for long-term status as a cult thriller on the edge. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
"The Machinist" is one of the best films I have seen this year; it has great acting, a mysterious and thought-provoking plot and is visually stylish. The viewer is never quite sure if the insomniac machinist Trevor Reznik (Christian Bale) is paranoid, hallucinating or being subjected to a form of supernatural mental torture as a series of disturbing events unhinge him. As the film progresses, the distinction between reality and imaginary blurs as Bale's mind becomes a hell to him. "The Machinist"is gripping and intriguing throughout and its ending will make you revisit the whole film again in your mind , a bit like "The Usual Suspects".Christian Bale's performance is remarkable as a tortured soul trying to identify the source of his torment in a loveless, isolated world where sleep and peace of mind remain constantly elusive.
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Format: DVD
If you like your movies dark, depressing, eerie, mysterious, and borderline insane, The Machinist should definitely be on your "to see" list. In these days of sequel- and remake-itis, it's always a treat to find a movie that dares to be original and to walk a dark line all its own. Director Brad Anderson and Christian Bale definitely get an A+ for effort here, but I don't think the ending is quite as effective as it could have been. It's easy to cross the line when you're dancing in a dark and narrow place, and the movie went just a little too far into "the whole world's crazy and everyone's out to get me" (which, on a completely unrelated point, is my personal motto) territory before bringing everything into focus. (That doesn't stop me from giving the film five stars, however - The Machinist is worlds better than most of the junk coming out of Hollywood these days.) Speaking of effort, I don't know what to say about Christian Bale - no Fat Albert to begin with - dropping 63 pounds in order to play the character of Trevor Reznik in this film. He is painfully thin here; a few less pounds, and you could zoom him right through your copy machine and have all the Christian Bales you could want. Why is his character so thin? Well, he hasn't slept in a year, and that kind of wears on a fellow after a while.
Trent is - you guessed it - a machinist. It doesn't look like a great job, but he obviously makes a killing, as he leaves $20 tips every night at the diner and enjoys many an evening with a call girl who sort of becomes his girlfriend. Jennifer Jason Leigh is about the only pretty thing you'll see in the 102 minutes of the film. We first meet Trevor when he's approaching his breaking point. The job of machinist can be quite hazardous, especially if you work with Trevor.
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Format: DVD
This is a fairly dark, surreal, psychological thriller about an industrial machine operator living a life of solitude in his own dreamy hell.

The central character acts brilliantly through the torment and confusion. Searching out the truth following some strange events and encounters, he finds some buried information painful to discover.

Without revealing too much about the plot, it's a good story. Not so odd it's never been done before, but with some originality. The confusion is built up well, and the truth is revealed for those of us who don't latch on. When that happens, everything gets tied up neatly and you re-evaluate everything you saw, 'sixth-sense' style.

Good entertainment, and something for your mind to do. Reccomended.
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Format: DVD
You may well have at least an inkling about where this film is going fairly early on, but don't expend too much energy trying to figure it out as you would be far better advised to let the film simply engage you and carry you with it. Even if I were to give away the ending, it probably wouldn't impair your enjoyment that much. But I wont.

But this is not a negative observation: The Machinist doesn't really ask you to follow a story, instead it involves you in the head-state of Resnik who, thanks to Christian Bale's extreme diet, looks very ill indeed. This is largely due to the fact that Resnik hasn't slept for a year, although I do wonder if this is biologically possible. Needless to say, he's not getting a clear perspective on things and his life seems to be in meltdown.

The depiction of mental states has seen few worthy appearances in film. Perhaps one mistake has been to attempt to realise it though use of effects: distortions, extreme camera techniques and so forth. While these may conjour up a sense of disorientation, fear and alienation, they generally fail to offer any real empathy with the character in question. The Machinist avoids these devices. Through the use of desaturated colours which range from sombre to downright sinister, along with a series of coincidences, repetitions and motifs which are often quite casual but ominous in their appearance, the film subtly allows us to sense the state of Resniks mind. The joins between what may and what may not be fantasy are seemless and this stirs up a greater sense of alienation and unease.

Many films of this type are let down by a poor resolution but the Machinist wraps things up neatly and doesn't leave you with the feeling that you've been undersold.
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