Thursday, June 13, 2024

Mixed Reviews at Venice for Noah Baumbach’s “White Noise” with Adam Driver and Greta Gerwig


Reviews coming in this afternoon are a mixed bag for “White Noise.”

Noah Baumbach’s adaptation of Don DeLillo’s 1985 novel is proving difficult to embrace for the critics at the Venice Film Festival. The movie will also open the New York Film Festival but Netflix is not showing in Toronto.

Some of the reviews include a letter grade of B from Indie Wire. Variety’s Owen Glieberman can’t seem to decide what’s going on. He kind of concludes, after summarizing the film: “We no longer buy what we’re seeing, even as we’re told, explicitly, what it all means. The film ties itself into knots to explicate the bad news.”

From the UK, Robbie Collin of the Telegraph writes: “Noah Baumbach’s adaptation of Don DeLillo’s darkly funny 1985 novel is like a Spielberg film having a nervous breakdown – in a good way.”

The only real rave is from Peter Bradshaw of the Guardian, who gave it five stars. But David Rooney of the Hollywood Reporter, after waffling, concludes: “The feeling remains that Baumbach is more in command with character-driven material than with this kind of accelerated absurdist plotting, which works to the extent it does in part thanks to Danny Elfman’s dark funhouse score, an exuberant return to vintage form.”

So, we’ll see, I guess, in a month or so when “White Noise” comes to New York. I’m still looking forward to it, especially with the an ending dance sequence that all the reviews are crazy about.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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