White Noise (2022)

White Noise (2022)
White Noise (2022)

Movie Details

White Noise (2022)
Director: Noah Baumbach
Cast-Adam DriverGreta GerwigDon Cheadle
Movie type- Comedy/Horror
Release date- 31 August 2022
IMDB Rating-5.7
Languages- English ,Čeština, 한국어, and Norsk nynorsk.
Duration-2 Hour 16 Minutes


White Noise


New York native and conversation mage Noah Baumbach has worked his way up from modest filmmaking beginnings in the 1990s to an Oscar nomination for Sepia and the Whale or the independent hit Frances Ha. Meyerowitz’s stories (a new selection) from 2017 confirmed his status as the new Woody Allen, and thanks to the two-year-newer Marriage History , he definitely entered the league of A-list directors whose fame goes beyond specific cinephile circles. Like the divorce elegy with Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson, his new film premiered at the Venice festival, and it was already clear at that moment that this piece would definitely not be for everyone.

As a source material, Baumbach chose Don DeLillo’s novel, which, after its publication in the mid-1980s, became not only one of the benchmarks of American postmodernism, but also one of the essentially unfilmable works that must remain only on paper. In this respect, White Noise reminds, for example, of Vonnegut’s Breakfast of Champions, which, to the displeasure of fans of the book, also saw a film adaptation. However, its director Alan Rudolph did not reach the filmmaking qualities of Baumbach, and so the sequence of strangely disjointed and deliberately dislocated images was received even more significantly negatively.

White noise: PHOTO GALLERY
We prefer not to delve into physical definitions, but metaphorically, white noise is used to refer to sound that creates an indistinguishable stream of background noise. In his book, DeLillo called this the interplay of subtle social and cultural factors preventing an individual from realizing his personal goals. Among them are intemperate consumerism, conspiracy theories, a senselessly over-intellectualized university environment, the disintegrating traditional concept of the family, ecological disasters caused by human activity or deeply rooted tendencies towards violence. This all sounds somewhat familiar, doesn’t it? It seems that none of these problems have been reduced in the last four decades, on the contrary, some have even swelled. In this regard, Baumbach’s choice clearly makes sense.

It is not by chance that we find ourselves in 1984, when we follow an unusual family in an American suburb. Jack Gladney (played by an awkwardly navel-gazing Adam Driver) teaches Hitler Studies, a field he himself founded, at the local university. Despite this specialization, he does not speak German and secretly completes his education. Together with his fourth wife, Babette (Greta Gerwig with an unmistakably 80s hairstyle), he raises four children, with only the youngest being theirs in common. However, the peculiar patchwork family works well until the moment when the peaceful life full of everyday bickering is disrupted by an unpredictable disaster.

This is designated as “air toxic phenomenon” and consists in the fact that dangerous substances appear in the air, due to which it is necessary to wear masks and whose consequences are completely unpredictable and contradictory in the first moments. The similarities with the circumstances of the covid pandemic cannot be overlooked, even though DeLillo has already prophetically described the herd behavior of individuals, the flooding of the public space with misinformation, and the helplessness and arrogance of institutions in the face of an unknown phenomenon.

The film is divided into several chapters, which is of course based on the original. However, it adds no structure to an already confused picture and is therefore more an illustration of Baumbach’s problems with an adequate adaptation of a challenging book. The New York author was based on a literary template for the very first time, for which he certainly did not choose the ideal material – and although he undoubtedly tackled it fiercely, the work does not seem coherent and complete. It is rather a stream of scenes, sometimes stimulating, sometimes amusing, but sometimes completely interchangeable. Again, we can observe an unpleasant phenomenon that often occurs in similarly authored collages – if much more material remained on the cutting room floor, it would only be good for the clarity, appeal and sound of the now two and a quarter hour long picture.

At the center of the volatile, meandering narrative is the fear of death, which both main characters approach in their own way. Jack admires that Hitler was able to essentially cheat death as his actions gained the unrelenting attention of all of humanity. “With every act of planning, we move closer to death,” he tries to intellectually tame his deepest fear. Babette, on the other hand, prefers experimental drugs. The characters refuse to accept their own finitude, and it is no coincidence that serious topics are often discussed in the supermarket, this unacknowledged center of family life and American values.

Play the trailerThe ideas spewed out are sometimes reminiscent of the Stepford Housewives . Look at the ground! , the recent To nic, dear or the recent Iñárritu’s Bardo , at one point you can’t miss the allusion to the famous monologue from Television Company . The film constantly alternates between genres and moods, at a pace that is apparently impossible for most viewers to follow – the low ratings on several user databases are proof of this. But when one wades through that intellectual slot, maybe something will remain in him – but more as a stimulus for further debates than thanks to the captivating breakthrough of the film itself. And that is, after all, a step back compared to a number of Baumbach’s previous works.

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