[Movie Review] Side Effects

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Director: Steven Soderbergh (Magic Mike, Ocean’s 11, Contagion)

Writer: Scott Z. Burns (The Informant!, Bourne Ultimatum, Contagion)

Stars: Rooney Mara(Girl With A Dragon Tattoo), Channing Tatum (21 Jump Street, G.I Joe), Jude Law (Contagion, Sherlock Holmes) and Catherine Zeta Jones (Red 2, Broken City)

SIDE EFFECTS is a provocative thriller about Emily and Martin (Rooney Mara and Channing Tatum), a successful New York couple whose world unravels when a new drug prescribed by Emily’s psychiatrist (Jude Law) – intended to treat anxiety – has unexpected side effects. (c) Official FB

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The Script

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Writer Scott Z Burns who is known for nothing more than brilliant movies such as The Informant!, Contagion, Bourne Supremacy and a couple of other movies, definitely drafted one of the best stories of his career in Side Effects. Right from the opening scene, the interest in the movie is well planned and keeps the viewer on the edge of his seat. The amazing thing about the movie is the way the twists slowly play out and the mysteries are not hurriedly revealed. At every point where a twist unfolds, it is totally unexpected. Up until the very last minute will you give a very deep sigh of relief when the movie is done. It’s a beautifully written script and definitely one of the best movies of the year 2013.

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The Directing

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Director Steven Soderbergh who bid farewell to the world of movie making (for the art of painting, yes you heard me right, painting) recently takes a bow in grand style. Side Effects definitely goes down in the records as one of the best movies he has ever made. For a man who has been very relevant over the last 6 years with at least a movie every year, hardly did any one of them fall short of expectations. Although I wasn’t a big fan of Magic Mike (honestly, I haven’t finished the movie till this day) but critics were full of nothing but praises for the movie shortly after its release. So also was the positive response to Ocean’s 13, Contagion, Traffic, and the list goes on and on.

Side Effects which delivers a classic neo-noir story was so well done, I am sure any mistake sighted in the movie would be seen as some part of Soderbergh’s style. Like many of his other movies do, Side Effects relies on awesome storytelling and captivating performances from its acts.

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The Acting

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Rooney Mara was absolutely mind blowing as usual in this movie. Just like she blew our minds in Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, she did again in this movie and totally stole the show from everyone else. She will most likely get a Oscar Nomination for her performance in this movie.

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Jude Law who played the more troubled and desperate Doctor Watson in this movie wasn’t short of a lovely performance himself. At some point in the movie, I got so drawn in, I started to truly feel sad for all the happenings going on in his life, before I finally snapped out of it.

Channing Tatum and Catherine Zeta Jones also did great as supporting casts in the movie. In all, it was a really brilliant cast and awesome acting. I wonder why it took me so long to see this movie.

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The Verdict

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This is a more than solid Soda and Popcorn and a definite contender for the best movie of the year award. It’s a lovely movie marking the exit of a true talent, if truly Steven Soderbergh is gone and won’t be returning to film making, then he will be really missed as one of the greatest of our time.
Sodas & Popcorn Rating4