Wim Wenders’ character-driven drama wants to be emotional and weighty but fails in both regards. While the performances from McAdams and Croze weren’t bad, Franco seemed to be miscast though he still does enough to make for an amiable character. The screenplay could’ve used an extra draft however all in all, I still found Every Thing Will Be Fine to be satisfyingly above average.
Every Thing Will Be Fine
MPI | NR – 119 min. – $29.98 | June 7, 2016
Date Published: 06/14/2016 | Author: The Movieman
THE MOVIE – 3.0/5
Wim Wenders’ drama has tinges of a few powerful scenes but in between those is utterly uneven and for James Franco, he turns in some decent scenes yet others, especially his eyes, makes him look like some kind of sociopath rather than playing a character dealing with some deep-seeded issues.
The story covers about 10 years beginning with novelist Tomas Elden (JAMES FRANCO), who has hit a writing block for his latest book, when returning home after a retreat, accidentally hits two young boys; one survives, the other didn’t. This not only sends turmoil for the boy’s mother, Kate (CHARLOTTE GAINSBOURG), but for Tomas and his girlfriend Sara (RACHEL MCADAMS), a relationship that was already on the brink. Eventually the two break up only, after a half-hearted suicide attempt by Tomas, get back together, though the troubles in the relationship permeates once again.
We fast forward a few more years and the pair had broken up once again (off screen) and he’s in a new relationship with Ann (MARIE-JOSÉE CROZE) who has a young daughter, Mina, whom he accepts as his own. Things appear to be going well but the accident still haunts him and when more years pass, he’s reconnected with the boy he saved, Christopher (ROBERT NAYLOR) who is experiencing emotional issues of his own, old wounds are opened back up.
Every Thing Will be Fine is an uneven film, even a tad dry in spots, but admittedly I have a fondness for the kind of movies that unfold over the course of decades and seeing the change in characters over the duration. The story, and in particular incident with the accident, was just enough to keep my attention and while James Franco’s performance was irregular, to the point where at times he came across as a sociopath in conjunction with serial killer eyes and glances, he did have a few decent scenes. Rachel McAdams, perhaps my favorite actress working today, has a small role appearing in maybe 10 minutes and she does well although some might find her French-Canadian accent jarring; Marie-Josée Croze works fine opposite Franco and the young Robert Naylor is just off balance to make his character effective.
Helmed by Wim Wenders from a script by Bjørn Olaf Johannessen, Every Thing Will Be Fine is, well, a fine little drama. The acting is for the most decent although as much as I enjoy James Franco and his unique style, someone like a Ryan Gosling or Joseph Gordon Levitt would’ve been more suitable. Beyond the performances, though, the film does drag in places taking a chunk out of any emotion built from the accident early on. Still, if you enjoy the actors and have patience, it’s worth a viewing.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 2.5/5
Interviews (1:01:44; HD) are a collection of soundbites with the cast and crew including Rachel McAdams, Wim Wenders, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Patrick Bauchau.
Behind the Scenes (15:50; HD) is a fly-on-the-wall featurette with on-location interviews by members of the cast and crew.
Trailer (2:01; HD)
Previews – A Perfect Day, Anesthesia, Dixieland, Born to Blue
VIDEO – 4.0/5
|MPI Media releases Every Thing Will Be Fine presented in its original 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and a 1080p high-definition transfer. The picture isn’t great but detail looks sharp throughout and colors appear to be well balanced and generally bright. There were no apparent instances of artifacts, aliasing or other flaws making for a pleasing looking transfer, just nothing extraordinary.
AUDIO – 3.75/5
|The movie comes with a decent and adequate DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track which sounds good providing for clear dialogue levels throughout and there’s a fair amount of ambient noises especially during the quieter scenes as the family travels in the shadows during the night. It’s not great, anything dynamic or reference quality material but it is more than sufficient for what the movie is.
OVERALL – 3.0/5
|Overall, Wim Wenders’ character-driven drama wants to be emotional and weighty but fails in both regards. While the performances from McAdams and Croze weren’t bad, Franco seemed to be miscast though he still does enough to make for an amiable character. The screenplay could’ve used an extra draft however all in all, I still found Every Thing Will Be Fine to be a satisfyingly above average movie that could’ve been so much better. The Blu-ray release offers good video/audio transfers and some OK bonus material.
Check out some more screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.