As Long as You Don’t Choose, Everything is Possible - Mr. Nobody Movie Review
Directed by Jaco Van Dormael, Mr. Nobody is a story set in 2092.The last mortal human on Earth Mr. Nemo Nobody reflects on his long past and thinks about the lives he might have led depending on the choice he makes as a 9 year old boy to choose between his divorcing parents. Infinite possibilities arise from this decision. As long as he doesn’t choose, everything is possible.
It’s really futile to describe the plot of the movie as it is so much more than any summary could explain. The film is so intricate and it has so many tonal and narrative changes that it seems absolutely deranged for the first 30 minutes or so. It’s quite complex between how the movie is fragmented in its timelines, which leaves you in utter confusion for a while. I kept trying to hang on to a particular fragment of the movie thinking that it is the right fragment. But before I knew it, another sequence of fragment would be introduced which would leave me muddled. I counted total of 6 different possible timelines at the end of the movie.
The essence of the movie I feel resides in the choices that a person makes, the meaning of these choices. Why does a person choose a particular road? To what destination does this road lead. The endless possible scenarios of our life that can happen just by a splinter of change occurring at a certain point in time. Nemo’s disability to make a choice results in everything being possible. He chooses both and takes us for a ride through all these different possible lives. The idea feels utterly similar to that of Schrödinger’s cat.
I watched the Director’s cut of the movie which was 157 minutes long, 16 minutes longer than the theatrical version. The movie is visually impressive even though the pace feels a bit slow at times. Christophe Beaucarne’s cinematography is brilliant. The music of the movie adds so much to it that too without being too subtle or too rash. Acting performances were great, especially by Jared Leto. Even the child actors in this movie did a good job. The accent of the main character keeps changing from British to American and vice-versa but it can be ignored. Incredible job done by the editing team of the movie for such smooth jumps back and forth through the different timelines. This is one of those movies where flaws in editing can end in a disastrous result.
The movie may seem to be quite confusing but at the same time it is highly intellectual and thought provoking. It’s not a film which would appeal to everyone and its justifiable why. It leaves you frustrated at times because of its messy plot and uncertain jumps between timelines. But if you’re able to comprehend it all, it takes you to this profound journey of how your choices decide your fate. I’ll give this movie an A-.
Few more things, I found the movie really romantic despite the fact that there are different love stories going on although the dialogues felt a little corny at times. And the old man’s laugh at certain points, it sounded like Leto’s joker laugh, couple of times quite eminently.