The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Curious Case of Benjamin ButtonThere’s a frightening symmetry to the process of aging that David Fincher, making his cruellest picture since Se7en, illustrates to eerie effect in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. That the film’s titular, time-unstuck protagonist is portrayed by Brad Pitt, that blue-eyed specimen of softly chiseled macho beauty, only adds to its implicit threat that we’re all on the way to decidedly less-attractive ends. That its magical backwards-aging VFX work is accomplished through a technique so advanced that it becomes hard to know where Pitt’s physical presence leaves off and the digitally enabled simulacrum takes over adds to the film’s metaphysical chill. Coming out of the theater, not only are you three hours older than you were when you went in, but you get the sense that your too-human flesh is also that much closer to obsolete.

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