The pandemic had much more of an impact on the movie industry than just at the box office. You can sort of tell the kind of film that was made during lockdown: Small, character-driven dramas or thrillers that utilize very few locations and minimal casts.
This weekend there is an example of how to accomplish this effectively (see "The Outfit"), and how difficult it can be. With "Windfall" (on Netflix Friday 3/18), we're happy that the cast and crew got out there and made a movie, but the result is a banal so-called "thriller" that's so minimal you'll nearly forget it's even there.
The entirety of "Windfall" takes place at some sort of fancy ranch, a Summer get-away vacation home of a rich CEO (Oscar-nominee Jesse Plemons) and his wife ("Emily in Paris" star, Lilly Collins). When they arrive, they get more than they bargain for, when they discover that a robber (Jason Segel) has broken in. We're not sure at first what his motivations are, or if he has any connections to his victims. Soon after, we won't much care.
The premise might have been played for laughs, but instead is devoid of them. Segel mopes around - clearly with something on his mind - and the CEO and his wife (nobody has names...yes, it's one of those kind of movies) seem to be taking this break-in pretty well. It helps that Segel is a large dude, hulking over the much smaller Plemons and Collins, but you wonder why the couple allows this to go on as long as it does, when there seems to be ample opportunities to escape.
If only the film itself provided the viewers with such luxuries. Even at 92 minutes, "Windfall" seems long and laborious. It's never quite clever enough to become interesting, and it doesn't even come close to scratching actual "thrills."
It's good to realize that the pandemic didn't totally shut-down the movie industry, but it's undeniable that it has produced a number of flat, forgettable movies like "Windfall," a movie that is so breezy and light that it feels instantly gone with the wind.
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller.
Run Time: 1 hour 32 minutes.
Starring: Jason Segel, Lilly Collins, Jesse Plemons, Omar Leyva.
Directed by Charlie McDowell ("The Discovery," "The One I Love").
"Windfall" is streaming on Netflix on Friday, March 18th, 2022.
3/19/2022 10:05:00 pm
You are so wrong....on so many levels. I never ever listen to critics because, in my opinion, all of you are just frustrated actors, producers, directors and screenwriters. I actually mean no disrespect but you are so off base I feel sorry for you and I'm sure this will not be published. Oh and I loved the musical score, every actor and the final.
3/20/2022 05:25:14 pm
Sorry Susan but this "movie" was a snooze fest. I kept thinking/hoping it has to get better. It didn't. All unlikable boring characters. Um, thrillers are supposed to be THRILLING not banal. Lame dialogue. Unbelievable ending. Here's a question... How about getting a divorce!?
3/20/2022 06:12:20 pm
Lame? Lame reply. I'm sorry but I was not watching Judge Judy. Maybe in your world Divorce is the answer but not everyone will. Sometimes it takes a crisis to realize one is deeply troubled or unhappy. You totally missed what the movie is about. I guess in Rear Window James Stewart should have simply closed the blinds and wheeled away. Or Psycho, don't go in the house on the hill.,...doesn't everyone know it's dangerous. Tell me, what movies have you written, directed, because I'd love to review them. Very 😔 sad.
3/20/2022 12:51:19 am
Sorry but you totally have no clue about movies. For every criticism you gave, I could give you a bunch of reasons proving my point.
3/20/2022 11:36:29 pm
Susan and Bryan are both clowns. This was an awful movie.
3/21/2022 07:57:42 pm
Seriously?🤡 Your description of others is hilarious. No problem not liking something but let's not resort to name calling.
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