After two 11-year-old classmates have had an altercation that leaves one child with missing teeth, their parents meet to discuss the incident.
Penelope and Michael Longstreet (Jodie Foster and John C. Reilly), the mother and father of the injured child, host the discussion in their tasteful Brooklyn apartment. Penelope is a semi-intellectual, who skims the surface of art and politics with a self-congratulatory, black-and-white outlook. Her unlikely mate is a housewares salesman, who initially appears reasonable until his vulgarity and uncouthness surface. Michael complains that “My wife dressed me up as a liberal” for the occasion.
Nancy and Alan Cowan (Kate Winslet and Christoph Waltz), the parents of the offending boy, are more affluent, but equally incongruous. Although Nancy is an investment banker, she functions chiefly as the resentful ornament of an unsavory corporate lawyer currently defending a large pharmaceutical company. From the moment the pair cross the Longstreets’ threshold, Alan is on his cell phone delivering instructions on how to shield his client from its victims. He is neither terribly interested in nor upset by his son’s behavior.
Ava and C.I. saw the film Sunday From Sunday's "Foul but not funny:"
Added by Ava and C.I. Sunday night after this published: And Kristen better really worry. We went to see Carnage tonight starring Jodie Foster and Kate Winslet. One of the trailers was for Jennifer Westfeldt's Friends With Kids and there was applause for Maya Rudolph, Adam Scott and Jon Hamm but everytime Wiig was onscreen, there was hissing and booing (hissing the first time she was shown, loud booing every time after). And, no, we weren't booing and hissing. We actually like Kristen Wiig. It's time for Wiig to seriously worry and stop listening to an echo chamber that's all about trashing Republicans and not at all about building a career for her. She might want to grasp that if all the press love of Tina Fey's Sarah Palin meant a damn thing, the show 30 Rock would have been a ratings hit that year instead of still struggling in the ratings before shifting to last year's even lower ratings. Wiig needs to worry.
And from Jim's "A note to our readers:"
Carnage -- a film they'd tried to see on the road but that had never worked out. They also posted everything, by the way. I'm not joking. But back to this. Everyone loves this. They were calling here trying to get a hold of Ava and C.I. A few (ABC people) were saying, "I can't believe you put that in!" while others (non ABC) were curious which show spoofed the bad biographer last month. They warned at the top that there were spoilers. They praise the show and have seen the first four episodes. The pilot they saw not only on DVD but also on numerous flights. In all, they saw the pilot seven times.
So since Sunday, I heard about this movie. Wednesday, Ava, C.I., Wally and I caught the film in DC. Wally and I were going to go by ourselves but they said no, it would be fun to see it again.
It's an interesting film. WSWS didn't like it. That's fine. What I didn't like was the ending. I could take what happened to the people, that's fine. But to suddenly be on a playground with an animal (I'm trying not to spoil it for you if you haven't seen it) and it was just too damn cutesy. (When you see the movie, you'll know why I'm calling the ending 'cutesy.')
I disagree with WSWS that Kate Winslet's character was "prissy." Otherwise, I can go along with the bulk of the review.
I think it misses some key points.
First off, no one wants to f**k John C. Reilly. Today or ever.
That's not a minor point. Jodie Foster is a mature woman but she's an attractive one. Why the hell did they put her with him?
I'm so sick of this s**t. It was like The Stepford Wives.
Did you read the piece Ann did on that movie? This is from it:
Okay, now let's get to the other problems with the film.
The nutless Matthew Broaderick.
He needs to stop acting. If all he has to offer is moments where he reminds you of Ferris Bueller, give it up. And Ferris? Really a little too Pan to be a sexual creature.
If Mark Ruffalo was telling Nicole Kidman that he couldn't be a man because of her job, it might carry weight. I'd still think, "Oh, you poor pathetic ass." But Mark feeling like he wasn't a man? That's a tragedy. Matthew feeling like he's not a man? He's not. He's an overgrown boy. He's got no chin, he's got no guts, he's a weak-willed namby pamby.
You also, as a viewer, need to buy into the idea that Nicole would be remotely attracted (for whatever reason -- in the film it's exhaustion) to playing at being a home maker. And this is underscored when she tells Bette how 'in charge' Matthew was the night before and how they had sex.
Matthew Broaderick is about as manly as Paul Lynde. (That's not calling him "gay" like Paul Lynde. Gay men can be very manly. That's me noting that Matthew is not at all manly.)
If you want to indulge in the caveman sex fantasy -- if -- you're going to want to have a caveman not a pudgy, balding accountant. Matthew can play the latter, but he's a joke as a man.
Again, Mark Ruffalo, okay, Nicole might be tempted for some hardcore sex. Same with Gerard Butler.
So why did they give Jodie and Kate Winslet two nutless assholes you wouldn't want to sleep with. Christopher Waltz plays Kate's husband. I never heard of him before and wasn't missing anything. Sadly, at one point he's in the bathroom in his briefs. And there's nothing to look at.
Where was Jude Law? Where was Johnny Depp?
Instead it was two attractive women with two ugly, ugly men. I felt like I was watching a CBS sitcom from the '00s.
Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"