Velvet Buzzsaw

Year: 2019
Studio: Netflix
Director: Dan Gilroy
Writer: Dan Gilroy
Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, Tom Sturridge, Toni Collette, Natalia Dyer, John Malkovich

After leaving it a few weeks between watching this movie and starting to write about it, I remember almost nothing in it apart from a cast of characters so eclectic they're self-indulgent on the part of writer/director Dan Gilroy, all of them taking part in a story that doesn't know what it is or where it's going and which doesn't make any sense when it gets there.

It certainly contains the kernel of an idea – a group of art dealers and exhibitors discover a heretofore unknown posthumous talent, all squabble over who gets him for their gallery/review/showing, and when the research reveals his paints included human blood, it all descends into horror movie dismemberments and deaths.

But any promise is lost as it expands from that central premise. The horror story elements that result in such bloody demises of the characters seems like an afterthought just to give it atmosphere, the supernatural elements that emerge just add-ons that have no real connection to a satire about the upper crust art world.

But even without that, the people, the way they talk and the plot they're all twisted up in are all so avant garde and esoteric it's impenetrable. The goings on and script might have suited the bitchy world of high-stakes art dealing, but it doesn't add up to a tale you'll remember a day later.

There are some great talents here and you can see how good Gyllenhaal, Colette, Russo, etc are in individual scenes or lines, but overall it's a waste of resources.

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