Starring: Adam Driver, Marion Cotillard, Simon Helberg, and Devyn McDowell
Director: Leos Carax
Anyone familiar with director Leos Carax will immediately understand that the most conventional transgression of Annette is just how unconventional it is. The Holy Motors filmmaker has crafted such an unusual musical that it's sure to inspire a few walkouts, but one can't help but admire his commitment to the bit. However, just how much of that bit one can stomach will vary (sometimes wildly). For my part, I enjoyed the overlong film's innate weirdness. Although I respect it more than I like it, I can't say I didn't ultimately get swept up in the intrigue. Approach with caution.
Annette is an English language opera set in modern times, and it's a little less unique than you'd hope. The performances are good and the singing is fine, even beautiful at times, but there is a sense of grandiose that is missing. Operas should feel larger than life, and Annette just doesn't, even though it boasts fantastic production design and cinematography. If it wasn't so strange at times, it'd be easy to write the film off as boring. In a way, being strange is the film's saving grace.