Rajeev Masand – movies that matter : from bollywood, hollywood and everywhere else

March 11, 2011

Dull and deathly

Filed under: Their Films — Rajeev @ 7:30 pm

March 11, 2011

Cast: Matt Damon, Bryce Dallas Howard, Cecile de France, George McLaren, Jay Mohr

Director: Clint Eastwood

In the opening scene of Clint Eastwood’s Hereafter, a tsunami practically wipes out a small seaside town. People run to escape, but the waves catch up with them washing away an entire market in a single sweep. It’s the most effective scene in the film, and one that was responsible for the film landing an Oscar nomination for Best Visual Effects.

The rest of Hereafter is a slow, boring slog. Weaving together three dreary stories about death and the afterlife, this film is more pretentious than profound, and requires much patience on your part to complete.

Matt Damon is George, a regular chap in San Francisco who is cursed with the burden of being able to communicate with the dead. Belgian actress Cecile de France plays Marie, a famous news presenter in Paris, who has a near-death experience in that tsunami. And finally, George McLaren plays a London schoolboy who loses his twin brother in a road accident, and wants to connect with his spirit. Predictably, the lives of these three protagonists intertwine towards the end of the film, but that extended climax at the London Book Fair where they meet is so contrived, it reminds you of a bad M Night Shyamalan movie!

The performances border on hammy, and the tone of the film is so self-important that by the time you come to the end you’re surprised the film has nothing even remotely interesting to say about death or the afterlife.

I’m going with two out of five for Hereafter. In the absence of a stronger dramatic pulse, this is one of Clint Eastwood’s weakest films and a solid disappointment.

(This review first aired on CNN-IBN)


  1. sir,
    I love Eastwood But this movie is slow and no good dialogs.
    Not a bad thing to watch. I just don’t like the ending romance
    I watched because i Love Clint Eastwood.
    I liked The two Twin brother story in Hereafter

    Waiting for J. Edgar (2012)

    Comment by priyabrata — March 12, 2011 @ 12:22 am

  2. This is a film for intelligent people who are naturally curious about what happens when the shutters close.—Roger Ebert

    Thats enough for me…Roger gave this movie a perfect score.If you cannot “get it” then its ok…Clint is one of the best directors out there.Gran Torino ,Changeling,Letters from Iwo Jima,Unforgiven,Invictus,MIllion dollar baby….
    He`s 81 years old…age where most of us begin losing bladder and bowel controls…and turn senile..but clint will be “the good” always…

    Great movie…

    P.S::”the good” was in reference to “the good,the bad and the ugly”

    Comment by shaik imran — March 13, 2011 @ 11:08 am

  3. @shaik imran says:
    Completely agreed man.
    I watched all Eastwood’s movie.
    My fav-Unforgiven.

    Ever notice how you come across somebody[Clint] once in a while you shouldn’t have f***ed with?-Gran Torino

    Opinions are like a**holes, everybody has one.-The dead pool

    Comment by priyabrata — March 16, 2011 @ 7:11 pm

  4. Have to disagree on this Masand Sir. It was quite intelligent and refreshing. I cannot say its boring. When you watch a movie there is this mood factor which comes in. If not in the right mood these thoughts like “lot of patience” needed comes out.

    Comment by Harish Mallya — March 19, 2011 @ 10:51 pm

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