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2.5
198 Ratings

American Pastoral

Directed by Ewan McGregor
United States, 2016
Drama

Synopsis

Set in postwar America, a man watches his seemingly perfect life fall apart as his daughter’s new political affiliation threatens to destroy their family.

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American Pastoral Directed by Ewan McGregor

Critics reviews

The [Vietnam] war of the film is nothing more than a collection of signifiers and trite political talk, and an excuse for McGregor to predictably drop Buffalo Springfield’s “For What It’s Worth” into the soundtrack. Roth’s roiling, inward-looking literature is difficult to translate into images, but surely one could do better than replicating only the basic surface of the novel.
September 11, 2016
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The film is hit-and-miss, and mostly miss — hampered by a lumpy, undigested narrative, an overly faithful framing device and a hard-working but miscast McGregor in the central role of Swede Levov, the Newark, N.J., man who watches with mounting desperation and horror as his family slips away.
September 11, 2016
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The metafictional aspect of the book is reduced to a few short scenes (with the patrician David Strathairn as Zuckerman; I kept expecting him to wish the audience “good night and good luck”), and we’re meant to take everything absolutely straight, including Jennifer Connelly’s faded beauty-queen psychosis as Mrs. Levov, Valorie Curry’s villainous Basic Instinct (1992) act as a nasty jailbait radical, and Dakota Fanning’s bratty/shell-shocked overacting as Merry.
September 10, 2016
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