The Air I Breathe
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This is the debut feature by Jieho Lee, a Korean-American director and screenwriter who wrote this script as a reflection to his journey in a "bimodal world". The cinematography is well suited by the description of bimodal, as the colors are very stark but a terrifying chiaroscuro breathes the presence of a dual tone universe which seems to preface the destiny we all have set out for us, but not independently of others. The acting is mediocre, but for the outstanding consummate performance of Andy Garcia, who seems to be getting better with time and roles, and the flaky, horned-up supercilious nephew of Garcia's role played by Emile Hirsch.Read more ›
The rest is spoiler, so don't read any further unless you have seen the film already.
For me at least, this film was about the monotony and the banality of our lives that are the by product of conformity, routine and safety. Each of the characters in the four stories are leading lives of quiet desparation. Their daily life consists of monotonous routine and they are all emotionally inert.
Each character is protected and "safe" within the framework of their life and each takes a huge risk that catapaults them out of their cocoons into something bigger then their original selves. Through risk, danger, and moments of intense and reawakened feeling, they experience, however briefly,a peak moment of humanity that makes the risk worthwhile even though it may end in death.
The "Happiness" segment is about a stockbroker, a man who jumped through all the right hoops, fit quietly into society, and now live on the verge of despair until the moment he takes a monumental risk, and steps outside his boundaries to spend a glorious hour as a criminal living entirely in the moment, totally alive right up to the moment of his death, having had one brief shining moment of a happiness that bordered on ecstacy.Read more ›
Forest Whitaker is tremendous. All of the performances are stellar. I'm not familiar with Emile Hirsch or Julie Delpy, but they are both strong in supporting roles.
There is a lot going on here, on multiple levels, and so it is only natural that the movie seems a little too short. Bacon's story in particular might use some further fleshing. However, like a chinese proverb it must be concise. The undercurrent matters more than the surface, and some viewers will be turned off by this. When the proverb comes full circle, the film's purpose is spent, and audiences waiting for the resolution of a typical three act play will likely find the ending too quick, as there are numerous story threads that never get wrapped up. But the story here is the vessel, not the wine.
Many will view it with the same eyes that saw Scarface and miss a lot. Nothing against the brilliance of Scarface, but this is a gangster flick of a very different sort. After I watched it the first time, I wasn't sure just what I'd seen. Then I thought it through, and realized some of its subtle brilliance. I'll tell you what I mean, but first:
"The Air I Breathe" What does that mean?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I did not know what to think about this film at first, but after I watched it I liked it a lot. The movie shows different characters in their life roles , from the depressed but... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Jerry G
Really like, been watching this actress for years, like how she portrays her characters.Published 17 months ago by John M Fox
Basing itself on the four cornerstones of an ancient Chinese proverb - Happiness, Pleasure, Sorrow and Love - "The Air I Breathe" offers up cleverly interlocked stories of... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Mark Barry
Intertwined stories amazingly written story. Worth the watch. Many top notch stars in this flick. Great value for the price!Published 23 months ago by Katshell
I really didn't expect to like this movie as much as I did, after all several critics had refereed to is as a tame re-packaging of Pulp Fiction. Read morePublished on February 22, 2013 by Todd Smith
i bought this movie cause I thought it was interesting. When I got it my boyfriend was like " oh, thats a chick flick". But his opinion of it changed when we watched it. Read morePublished on January 21, 2013 by Ashley W
Thsi is by far one of the best movies I've ever seen, and I don't like many movies. With an outstanding cast this movie will hook you from the start.Published on January 1, 2013 by susan