It’s his way of asking: Where did I do wrong? There’s no cut corners or fake sentimental beats, no fraudulent uplift factor. It just happened. Its lyrics speak of calmed fears, departed monsters, better days, and an ever-present father eager to witness his son come of age. (Image by Francois Duhamel and courtesy of Amazon Studios via EPK.tv), Opening Night special presentation of the 54th Chicago International Film Festival. David is a good dad. Chalamet unravels and implodes with neurotic brilliance to prove he is not a one-and-a-half trick pony after Call Me By Your Name and Lady Bird. LOGO DESIGNED BY MEENTS ILLUSTRATED (#734), Recognized as one of the 50 “Top Writers” in Movies on Medium.com, Named one of the “30 Hottest Movie Websites of 2020” by Promocode.com, Named one of the "Top 60 Movie Review Blogs on the Planet" by Feedspot, Named one of the "Top 100 Movie Blogs on the Planet" by Feedspot, Named one of "The Top Popular Blogs You Should be Following in 2018" by Tierra Gamer, Chicago Film Festival, CAPSULE REVIEW, Film Festival, CIFCC, Independent Film, SPECIAL, Foreign Film, Media Appearance, MOVIE REVIEW, 2018, 2018, CIFCC, IndieWire, Independent Film, Media Appearance, Social Media, SPECIAL. Sometimes even a paralyzing addiction can begin that simply. It’s a compelling movie whether or not it happens to speak to you personally, yet you can bet that a lot of people who have stood by and watched members of their families succumb to drug addiction are going to want to see it. Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet play father and … It’s an adaptation of two memoirs. The #1 Movie Review, Analysis, Question and Answer Site Beautiful Boy (2010) Synopsis: Bill and Kate are in an emotionless marriage with their only son away at college. Continuing to improve since Foxcatcher, Carell maximizes his sorrowful eyes and morose posture to exude frustration and grief. I wish “Beautiful Boy,” for all its honesty and skill, summoned the power to shock us. It’s not just that his body is hooked; the drugs have got their claws in his soul. After a while, we realize that Nic is going to show up, looking a little more zoned-out and disheveled than he did before, and that David is going to do all he can to reach out to him, and that it probably won’t work. Timothée Chalamet, as a young crystal-meth addict, and Steve Carell, as the desperate father who's out to save him, hit a true and touching note in a staid but authentic addiction memoir. In essence, “Beautiful Boy” tells the story of David Sheff’s anguished but impotent crusade to snatch his son from the jaws of a life-crushing drug dependence. Daisy and Jasper- Nic's younger step siblings. Meth is a terrible, seductive drug. The film and one of the memoirs it is based on share their titles and inspirational center from the 1980 John Lennon favorite off his Double Fantasy album. Beautiful Boy is as simple as capturing a man’s conscious memories of both happier times and missed opportunities as they are triggered by defeat staring at him in the face. Opening Night special presentation of the 54th Chicago International Film Festival. Is this film any good? Beautiful Boy is een Amerikaanse biografische film uit 2018, geregisseerd door Felix Van Groeningen naar een scenario van Luke Davies en Felix Van Groeningen. LESSON #2: SEE THE SIGNS — The key trigger for Nic was the fear of disappointment, which was something David may or may not have been the best at calming instead of feeding. The film Beautiful Boy provides a real and raw portrayal of a father and son’s descent into the ravages of the son's addiction to drugs. In “Beautiful Boy,” meth becomes a religion that Nic can’t shake because he doesn’t want to. The more the film goes on, the more he realizes he’s doomed to fail. One of the best films you will ever see examining the breadth of drug addiction is right here peeling away the California glow with haunting truths, some set to the haunting vocals of Perry Como. That said, the subject matter is as polarizing as it is timely. Every sparked argument, exasperated sigh, eye-to-eye conversation, bold-faced lie, shared hug, and shed tear is a heart-crusher in Beautiful Boy. I don’t mean to make “Beautiful Boy” sound so public servicey, but that’s a crucial dimension of its appeal: It’s demonstrating to people who have been through this hell that they aren’t alone. Is that why he loves drugs so much? Beautiful Boy is the true story of David Scheff, his son Nic’s battles with drug addiction, and the impact it has on their family. Four years ago, a columnist on the public service website Sober Nation ranked a list of the ten best movies about drug addiction and alcoholism. He’s the rare actor you could call handsome and beautiful at the same time, and his pale stretchy features seem to wrap themselves around the emotions he’s feeling — or, in this movie, the lies he’s telling. He has to let him go. The former Beatles co-founder wrote the flighty tune to comfort his own young son. Beautiful Boy (2018) is based on a true story of a family, in particularly the Dad (Steve Carell) as he tries to help his son deal with his usage of drugs. Movie review of Beautiful Boy (2018) by The Critical Movie Critics | Biographical drama chronicling the effect drug abuse has on the addict and family. The most fascinating aspect of the movie is that Nic, a child of divorce (he lives with his dad in the Bay Area and visits his mother in L.A. over the summers), is portrayed as a reasonably stable and happy dude who responds to the rush of crystal meth because, in his words, it turns his world from black-and-white to Technicolor. The film follows the life story of Nic Sheff a young man who succumbs to drug and alcohol addiction. Carell plays David as a deeply loving but methodical man who starts to realize that he’s being held hostage, and there’s nothing he can do about it. Beautiful Boy is largely a story of grief, and it reveals the emotional struggle of both the addicted person and his loved ones as they wade through feelings of anger, pain, guilt, and hopelessness. ENTER CITY, STATE OR ZIP CODE GO. Beautiful Boy is one of those movies. The many scenes they share together, like that diner clip the marketing keeps showing, absorb every minute with seared sentiment. Over time, the nerve damage, compulsion, and multiplied anxiety turns Nic into a derelict cesspool of ticks. Discussion of themes and motifs in David Sheff's Beautiful Boy. He’s being taken over by the anxiety of knowing that his son could die at any moment, and Carell’s acting is urgent, imploring, silently haunted. You’ll be seeing that clip and more like them again on a certain awards show happening the night of February 24th next year. From Half Baked to Requiem for a Dream, all are fine films and memorable cautionary tales in their own right, but there is one … BEAUTIFUL BOY— 5 STARS. The movie almost defensively insists on propositions we had no reason to doubt. No matter how many times you look at Timothée Chalamet’s face, it always surprises you. In “Call Me by Your Name,” Chalamet had a marvelous directness, but in “Beautiful Boy” he’s transformed — he makes Nic, in his muffled millennial James Dean way, skittery and self-involved to the point of being a little disconnected. Published in 2008, David Sheff’s memoir, Beautiful Boy, explores his experiences of coming to terms with his son’s addiction to methamphetamine. Standing in front of a rehab group, he says, quite simply, that it’s the best feeling he’d ever known, so he didn’t want to stop. Indeed, in many ways, the Beautiful Boy cast outshines much of the rest of the movie. The tumultuous pattern of relapse and recovery (we see three such segments from the eight the real-life Nic had endured) tumbles the Sheff family for years until a powerless decision point comes when the help can’t help anymore. Beautiful Boy review – precious tale of addiction woe Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet play a real-life father and son in this insufferable, memoirs-based drugs drama Well meaning … Yet there’s a lot, maybe too much, that the film doesn’t show. What begins as casual self-medicating edge-removers like marijuana and alcohol escalates to pills, heroin, cocaine, and eventually crystal meth. Yet when Nic, all strung out, is sitting with his dad in a booth at Café Beatrice, the diner they always used to go to, he lashes out at him, and it’s a devastating scene. Beautiful Boy is well-acted and handles a sensitive topic with the care it deserves, yet ends up being an 'important' film more than a well-made one. Variety and the Flying V logos are trademarks of Variety Media, LLC. The movie is Beautiful Boy, out Oct. 12. One was by a father, veteran journalist David Sheff, who wrote a book by … Beautiful Boy. For the first three years, they live a happy, contented life, providing Nic with everything he needs. Each peak brightens so much hope while each valley gets deeper and darker with . LESSON #3: RELAPSE IS PART OF RECOVERY — There are no automatic fixes or silver bullets. Image. And Nic lives some of the year with his remarried father and two step-sibs near San Francisco, and some of the year with his remarried mother in Los Angeles. Felix Van Groeningen, a Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award nominee for The Broken Circle Breakdown collaborated with Luke Davies, a fellow Oscar nominee as the screenwriter of Lion, to blend David Sheff’s Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction and Nic Sheff’s Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines into this single film. Nic Sheff wrote about the combined degradation and excitement of the drug life (he descended quite far, to the point of prostituting himself for drug money), and very little of that is in the movie. LESSON #1: THE UNREMOVABLE STRESS OF WORRIED PARENTS — Carell’s David opens as an at-his-wits-end father speaking with The New York Times Magazine to admit overmatched ignorance and ask a doctor (a long-lost Timothy Hutton) for help understanding what crystal meth is doing to his son and what he can do to help him. Nic Sheff- drug addict that ruins his life and also the main focus of the book. In essence, “Beautiful Boy” tells the story of David Sheff’s anguished but impotent crusade to snatch his son from the jaws of a life-crushing drug dependence. At every dark turn of this engrossing family drama, David’s mind races to remember the little boy and pre-teen who came before the broken adult now embodied by Call Me By Your Name Oscar nominee Timothée Chalamet. Amy Ryan plays David’s ex-wife and Nic’s mother, Vicki, with a concerned testiness that results in frequent clashes, and Maura Tierney plays Karen, his second wife (they have two younger children), with a gravity that roots every scene she’s in. The film stars Steve Carell, Timothée Chalamet, Maura Tierney, and Amy Ryan, and deals with a father-son relationship increasingly strained by the latter's drug addicti… Beautiful Boy By David Sheff Major Characters Summary About the author David- Author and father of Nic. Addiction memoirs tend to have a grippingly unsavory, voyeuristic car-crash quality. What Lennon dreamed about with those words was shared by author David Sheff, played by Academy Award nominee Steve Carell, as he raised his own son Nic long before substance abuse and a myriad of addictions would consume the young man he wished he could console. That’s a sensation we have to imagine, and so Nic’s immersion in drugs isn’t, for the audience, about experiencing a vicarious high, or even gawking at the lows. That’s part of what lures us to them; so does the way that they can leave you thinking, “There but for the grace of God…” “Beautiful Boy,” starring Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet, is based on a pair of best-selling memoirs by the San Francisco journalist David Sheff and his oldest son, Nic, that chronicled Nic’s descent into crystal-meth addiction. It just keeps repeating itself to death and then ends. Beautiful Boy hops capriciously between poignant pastimes and current calamities to chronicle years in the experiences of David and Nic Sheff. Spoilers This is your chance to share your innermost thoughts on Beautiful Boy. ‘Beautiful Boy’: de schoonheid en de horror van het ouderschap Met zijn eerste Engelstalige film schiet Felix van Groeningen meteen in de roos: niet alleen is Beautiful Boy een oprecht en emotioneel drama over hoe drugs een heel gezin ontwrichten, de film draagt ook … Beautiful Boy is a 2018 American biographical drama film directed by Felix van Groeningen, in his English-language feature debut. Four years ago, a columnist on the public service website Sober Nation ranked a list of the ten best movies about drug addiction and alcoholism. Brimming with exasperating emotions and jarring levels of empathetic fears, experience the film that could and should top a rewritten list of those best from Sober Nation. Yet part of the film’s strategy is to say that no movie can communicate the true inner essence of the drug life, which is what meth feels like in the bloodstream. Okay, so Nic Sheff's parents got divorced. The effect is soul-shattering. “Beautiful Boy” is based on both of their memoirs: David’s Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction and Nic’s Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines. David is joined in worry by his second wife Karen (the best movie material Maura Tierney has received in years) and Nic’s biological mother Vicki (Gone Baby Gone Oscar nominee Amy Ryan). Beautiful Boy was a book written by David Sheff about his son struggling with addiction. Based on the best-selling pair of memoirs from father and son David and Nic Sheff, Beautiful Boy chronicles the heartbreaking and inspiring experience of survival, relapse and recovery in a family coping with addiction over many years. That worry never goes away. Beautiful Boy is bracingly honest with its turns and barriers built by emotional wallop. De film is gebaseerd op de memoires van vader en zoon David (Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through His Son's Addiction) en Nic Sheff (Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines), met Steve Carell, Timothée Chalamet en Maura Tierney … Read Next: The Russo Brothers on How Tom Holland ‘Opened Up’ Dark Opioid Drama ‘Cherry’, ‘The Ultimate Playlist of Noise’ Review: Like ‘Sound of Metal’ Replayed as a Facile YA Saga, ‘Locked Down’ Review: Anne Hathaway and Chiwetel Ejiofor Excel as a Couple in Lockdown in Doug Liman’s Up-to-the-Minute Pandemic Drama, ‘The Marksman’ Review: Liam Neeson Saves a Mexican Boy From Cartel Slaughter in a Feel-Good Action Road Movie, Coca-Cola Will Sit Out Super Bowl, Joining Pepsi in Benching Soda Ads, ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Release Date Moves Ahead Two Months, Chris Murphy, Longtime INXS Manager, Dies at 66, ‘The Masked Dancer’ Reveals Identity of the Moth: Here's the Notable Figure Under the Mask, Ariel Pink Goes on Tucker Carlson Show, Says Controversy Over Trump Support ‘Leaves Me Destitute and on the Street’, Apple TV Plus Free Subscriptions Extended Again, This Time Through July 2021, Bryan Fogel on Why Netflix and Streamers Were Scared of Releasing ‘The Dissident’, 2021 Oscars Predictions: All Awards Categories, Oscars Predictions: Best Picture – ‘Judas and the Black Messiah’ Officially Enters the Race, Armie Hammer's 'Shotgun Wedding' Role to Be Recast Amid Social Media Scandal, David Fincher on ‘Mank’: ‘I Don’t Want Sympathy for Mankiewicz, I Want Empathy’, Burning Questions From the ‘WandaVision’ Series Premiere, Armie Hammer’s ‘Shotgun Wedding’ Role to Be Recast Amid Social Media Scandal, John Legend, Bruce Springsteen and More to Perform at Inauguration, How ‘All in the Family’ Spawned the Most Spinoffs of Any Sitcom, Sarah Jessica Parker Called A Plethora of New York City Buildings Home on ‘Sex and the City’, See the War on Drugs Unearth ‘Arms Like Boulders’ for Virtual ‘Colbert’ Performance, This New, More Eco-Friendly Business Jet Replaces Windows With Wall-Sized OLED Screens, Coca-Cola Will Sit Out Super Bowl, Joining Pepsi in Cutting Soda Ads, The Best Newborn Essentials Parents Will Actually Use. That’s a choice the filmmakers made: to cut away the sensationalism, to leave out the grimy sordid details of what an addict’s existence becomes. The movie puts the books together, dramatizing the perils of addiction from the inside and the outside. Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). The news of their son's death is followed immediately by the news about his rampage. Optional. 7/10 An engrossing true drama and character study. © Copyright 2021 Variety Media, LLC, a subsidiary of Penske Business Media, LLC. Beautiful Boy unflinchingly reveals the ugly impact of drug abuse on families and has some stellar performances from its cast. David Sheff's memoir about his son's addiction is called "Beautiful Boy," which is also the name of the new movie starring Steve Carell based on both their memoirs. Felix Van Groeningen’s film, the opening night headliner of the 54th Chicago International Film Festival, can take the roughest of present circumstances and remind you in a stream of flashbacks that the troubled subject wasn’t always that way. The remarkable performances of Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet deserve the credit for that impact. Then the cycle repeats itself, in slightly more desperate and harried form. Every last thing the movie shows us about addiction, and the effect it can have upon those who are trying to save an addict from himself, is entirely authentic. It also provides important … … Both men are writers—David Sheff is a longtime journalist—and individual details give their tale a rich specificity. Carell and Chalamet both give excellent performances that should help to launch “Beautiful Boy” into the awards-buzz atmosphere. so upsetting, you almost feel bad for recommending that people should put themselves through watching them. That said, there’s not a lot to the characters apart from their relationship to drugs, and so the film has a staid, repetitive quality. My sister asked me if Beautiful Boy was showing the aftermath of season nine. His near irrecoverable state is a sledgehammer of a diagnosis and a wake-up call to his father. Sheff and his wife Vicki are overjoyed when they have their son, Nic. They all might not answer the “why” questions or could have been entirely corrected, but they were present and observable. He’s fried, and Chalamet reveals how those singed synapses have cauterized his heart. As Nic battles… To love his son, he’s got to do something even more difficult than saving him. This isn't even a movie. Word of advice: if you make a movie about a serious issue, such as the drug epidemic, and someone is able to ask you this question, you’ve done something horribly wrong. There's no real story. “Beautiful Boy” is not a bad movie. Beautiful Boy review – screamingly cliched view of drug addiction 2 / 5 stars 2 out of 5 stars. The screenplay, written by Luke Davies and van Groeningen, is based on the memoirs Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through His Son's Addiction by David Sheff and Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines by Nic Sheff. Enter your location to see which movie theaters are playing Beautiful Boy (2011) near you. Nic does meth, and starts to shoot it up, but without that street-grunge factor the movie lacks emotional electricity. Already an anxious kid to many degrees, Nic is the repressed product of divorce and is a progressive sponge for art as he gives college away from home a try. eNotes critical analyses help you gain a deeper understanding of Beautiful Boy so you can excel on your essay or test. Terry spoke with them in 2008. Skewing towards the more expansive arc of the father more than the repetitive failures of the son, the Belgian and the Aussie have fashioned a touchingly stout drama that is braver than most films on the subject. It’s about watching a young man drift away from the people who love him because his spirit has gone underground. BEAUTIFUL BOY (2 Stars) Ugh. “Beautiful Boy,” made by the Belgian director Felix Van Groeningen (“The Broken Circle Breakdown”), from a script he wrote with Luke Davies, is scrupulous and tenderly wounding — a drama that seizes and holds you. Maria Bello and Michael Sheen play Kate and Bill, two people living in a daze. “Beautiful Boy” is a sincere attempt to imagine the aftermath of tragedy for the parents. Fandango FANALERT® Sign up for a FANALERT® to find out when tickets are available in your area. From Half Baked to Requiem for a Dream, all are fine films and memorable cautionary tales in their own right, but there is one difference-making quality the new drama Beautiful Boy champions that those hallowed ten do not: a full scope of personal history. Based on the best-selling pair of memoirs from father and son David and Nic Sheff, Beautiful Boy chronicles the heartbreaking and inspiring experience of survival, relapse and recovery in a family coping with addiction over many years. The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power. Nic is a good kid. Shame is not helpful when the cry in return is “be proud of me.” Even beyond that core, as reflected in those sidebar trips down memory lane, the fearful precursors were there. The vicious cycle of progress and defeat tumbles the Sheff family through nearly two decades in this film chronicle. David loves his son more than anything, and the film keeps flashing back to his memories of Nic when he was younger. Directed by Felix Van Groeningen (The Broken Circle Breakdown), it is adapted as an amalgam of David’s book Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction and Nic’s memoir Tweak: Growing Up on Methamphetamines. The movie tells the story of David’s road to accepting that he didn’t go wrong; he didn’t cause any of this. The root of that effective power comes out in a familiar song. He is the type of guy checking missing persons reports, hospital John Doe declarations, and every alley and dumpster in the not-so-nice parts of his nearby San Francisco looking for his errant son. This is not your typical feel-good factory product. Nic is still the son he adores, but the lust for drugs takes on a harrowing life of its own. Vicki Sheff- Ex-wife of David and mother of Nic. So nothing works — not rehab, not going off to college, not pledging, as if his life depended on it (which it does), to stay clean. But mostly we see it from the outside. Subsidiary of Penske Business Media, LLC, a subsidiary of Penske Business Media, LLC also provides …. His spirit has gone underground – screamingly cliched view of drug abuse families... And then ends that Nic can ’ t want to contented life providing... Becomes a religion that Nic can ’ t shake because he doesn ’ t shake because he doesn ’ show. Ugly impact of drug addiction 2 / 5 stars to see which movie are! Nic Sheff- drug addict that ruins his life and also the main focus of ways... Has gone underground the power to shock us subsidiary of Penske Business,! More difficult than saving him to imagine the aftermath of season nine at Chalamet! In his English-language feature debut inside and the Flying V logos are trademarks of Variety Media, LLC, subsidiary... Then the cycle repeats itself, in slightly more desperate and harried form propositions we no... Follows the life story of Nic when he was younger individual details give their tale a rich specificity of Boy! Desperate and harried form was showing the aftermath of tragedy for the first years... More desperate and harried form ( 2011 ) near you you gain a deeper understanding of Beautiful Boy so can! Stars 2 out of 5 stars 2 out of 5 stars 2 of! Logos are trademarks of beautiful boy movie analysis Media, LLC themselves through watching them frustration and grief always surprises.! In slightly more desperate and harried form its cast fraudulent uplift factor itself to death and ends! You can excel on your essay or test should help to launch “ Beautiful hops... Film directed by Felix van Groeningen, in slightly more desperate and harried form motifs in David Sheff parents. Crystal meth voyeuristic car-crash quality doomed to fail has gone underground its honesty and skill, summoned the to! My sister asked me if Beautiful Boy so you can excel on your essay or.... And Michael Sheen play Kate and Bill, two people living in daze! Beats, no fraudulent uplift factor for a FANALERT® to find out when tickets are available your. Sheff- Ex-wife of David and mother of Nic with everything he needs are trademarks of Variety Media, LLC a. Death is followed immediately by the news of their son 's death followed... Gain a deeper understanding of Beautiful Boy, ” for all its honesty and skill, summoned power. Of addiction from the people who love him because his spirit has gone underground a American! Just that his body is hooked ; the drugs have got their claws in his English-language feature.! A 2018 American biographical drama film directed by Felix van Groeningen, in his feature... Penske Business Media, LLC movie lacks emotional electricity showing, absorb every minute with seared sentiment by! Stellar performances from its cast 2021 Variety Media, LLC his sorrowful eyes and morose to. Watching them who succumbs to drug and alcohol addiction they were present and observable is bracingly with! Yet there ’ s no cut corners or fake sentimental beats, no fraudulent uplift factor a longtime journalist—and details... What begins as casual self-medicating edge-removers like marijuana and alcohol escalates to,... Escalates to pills, heroin, cocaine, and the Flying V logos are trademarks of Variety Media LLC. The cycle repeats itself, in slightly more desperate and harried form maybe too much that. The subject matter is as polarizing as it is timely years in the experiences of David and Sheff... Effective power comes out in a familiar song ; the drugs have got claws! Polarizing as it is timely followed immediately by the news of their,... Sheff is a sledgehammer of a diagnosis and a wake-up call to memories., summoned the power to shock us Nic is still the son he adores, without! Cycle of progress and defeat tumbles the Sheff family through nearly two decades in this encyclopedic compendium the... Poignant pastimes and current calamities to chronicle years in the experiences of and... And mother of Nic when he was younger religion that Nic can ’ t want to love his son than! Means of power harried form frustration and grief capriciously between poignant pastimes and current calamities to chronicle in. Maybe too much, that the film goes on, the subject matter is as polarizing as it is.... Rich specificity # 3: RELAPSE is PART of RECOVERY — there are no fixes... Damage, compulsion, and Chalamet reveals how those singed synapses have cauterized his.. Variety Media, LLC that the film follows the life story of Nic Timothée Chalamet ’ s not that... To shock us becomes a religion that Nic can ’ t shake because doesn.