The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) Movie Review: A Timeless Tale

By: Alex Phuong (A Toast) –

F. Scott Fitzgerald remains one of the most celebrated American authors. He wrote The Great Gatsby and Tender is the Night, both of which resulted in film adaptations. Fitzgerald did more than just write novels, though, because he also wrote one of the most unusual short stories ever. His timeless story, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, is a unique tale about the nature of time itself. This beloved story inspired David Fincher to create one of the most celebrated films of 2008.

A Toast

This film is pure Oscar bait. It received a total of thirteen nominations, including Best Picture. The best feature of this film is its screenplay because of Eric Roth’s and Robin Swicord’s treatment of the original source material. They both basically made a bizarre tale very universal by examining the nature of life itself. The screenwriters also explored the theme of time in beautifully profound ways, and ultimately teach audiences to not take their lives for granted. This powerful story translates well to the silver screen thanks to powerful performances from Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, and Taraji P. Henson. It also contains all of the elements of a major Oscar contender, including outstanding visual design, stunning visual effects, and the hard work of a brilliant director.

Verdict

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is one of those rare cases in which a film adaptation can be very strong without being too close to the original source material. The original short story is actually very bizarre because the main character could actually talk while he was an old man in the form of an infant. The screenwriters basically took a very strange story, and crafted a Twenty-First Century masterpiece. This film might not have won Best Picture, but it is still a great picture that will hopefully stand the test of time.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) Drinking Game

Take a Drink: whenever Mr. Gateau’s clock is seen with its hands ticking backwards

Take a Drink: every time Benjamin Button and Daisy encounter each other as he grows younger and she grows older

Drink a Shot: during every quotation that sounds like it came from a wisdom book (i.e. “Our lives are defined by opportunities; even the ones we miss.” –Benjamin Button).

About Alex Phuong

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