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A mini-series that traces CIA activities over a 40-year period, from the beginning of the Cold War through the demise of the Soviet Union.
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Full Plot Details
With THE COMPANY, maverick director Robert Altman brings his idiosyncratic vision to Chicago and the acclaimed Joffrey Ballet. Neve Campbell is Ry, an aspiring performer who gets her chance to shine when a fellow dancer is injured. Stepping into the spotlight, Ry finally reaches her true potential, impressing the company's artistic director Alberto Antonelli (Malcolm McDowell). As the company prepares for their performance of Blue Snake, Ry finds herself falling in love with the good-natured, handsome chef Josh (James Franco). Meanwhile, backstage dramas continue to develop at an exhausting pace. Having studied ballet with the National Ballet of Canada, Campbell easily glides into her role, performing all of her own dance routines with the skill of a true professional. Well known for his conscious debunking of myths and genres, Altman truly lets himself go this time around, delivering a jarringly understated film that is more documentary than drama. Cinematographer Andrew Dunne elegantly captures the many performance scenes on sweeping digital video. Adding even more beauty to the proceedings is the film's robust soundtrack, which features music from Van Dyke Parks, Julee Cruise, as well as several variations on the classic song Funny Valentine (Elvis Costello, Chet Baker, Marvin Laird, and Kronos Quartet).
Reviews & Comments
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|TV Guide Maitland McDonagh Though the ballets themselves are beautifully shot, they lean heavily in the direction of gimmicky and prop-heavy pieces; they're visually interesting but, by and large, they're not great dance.|
|Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert Why did it take me so long to see what was right there in front of my face -- that The Company is the closest that Robert Altman has come to making an autobiographical film?|
|The A.V. Club Keith Phipps It should be a personal triumph or a personal tragedy, but it's neither: just another moment between curtain-rise and curtain-fall in the glorious business of creating beauty.|
|The New York Times A.O. Scott Enjoyably lithe and droll yet somehow almost water-soluble; it seems to dissolve onscreen.|
|Philadelphia Inquirer Steven Rea The good thing about The Company is that nothing much happens. The bad thing about The Company is that nothing much happens.|
|New York Post Megan Lehmann Campbell is a sweet presence and a capable dancer, featured in a theatrical pas de deux on an open-air stage during a wild thunderstorm that is one of the film's visual highlights.|
|The Globe and Mail (Toronto) Liam Lacey A love letter to performers who put their egos and bodies on the line.|
|Christian Science Monitor David Sterritt Like many Altman movies, this is less a dramatic story to follow than an atmospheric environment to visit.|