Written and directed by Paul Haggis
Starring: Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis. Adrien Brody, Maria Bello, Kim Basinger, Olivia Wilde, Michele Melega, Gianni Franco, Marius Bizau, James Franco, Loan Chabanol, Moran Atias, Riccardo Scamarcio, Katy Louise Saunders
Love, betrayal and a tragic event with no place for forgiveness – only compassion. An event that, until accepted, will cause unhappiness to everyone involved.
Paris, Rome and New York – three cities interconnected in a chain of events to tell a remarkable story of multiple people, whose paths are in one way or another linked to each other – one because of heartbreak, another because of betrayal and the third one is responsible for the whole tragic event. Yet, there is no one to blame: just a chain of unfortunate circumstances. This film is another piece of art by Paul Haggis: it will leave us stunned by the superb creation of this amazing story.
“Third Person” begins with Michael (Liam Neeson) sitting in the darkness of his hotel room in Paris. He is a writer working on his new book. Suddenly he stops writing and looks back: he hears a child whisper to him – “Watch me”. This sentence will haunt everyone fully or partially involved in the tragic event.
New York: Theresa (Maria Bello) is looking into the swimming pool and is ready to jump. But something terrifies her and makes her change her mind. Julia (Mila Kunis) is rushing to meet with her lawyer – Theresa; however she is late again. Elaine (Kim Basinger) is speaking on the phone, when she accidentally drops the phone into the sink. The picture of a little child fades on the screen of her broken phone in front of her eyes.
Rome: Scott (Adrien Brody) is meeting with his companion. After the meeting he hurries into the first American bar he sees on his way, where he meets Monika (Moran Atias) – a beautiful Italian woman, whose life turns out to be even more complicated than his own.
All these people know nothing of each other’s existence, but their paths cross every day because of three things – betrayal, love, passion; they are united by a feeling of guilt for the circumstances of the past and they must face it one way of another.
“Third Person” is written and directed by one of the most talented filmmakers – Paul Haggis. Since his appearance in Hollywood, it is fascinating how Haggis has come up with all these unique, compelling and mesmerizing stories. He has secured his name in history of cinema as the first screenwriter to write two Best Film Oscar winners back-to-back – “Crash” and “Million Dollar Baby”. But his success does not stop here. Those who have watched “Crash”, “The Next Three Days”, “Letters from Iwo Jima”, “Flags of Our Fathers” or ‘Quantum of Solace” should be well aware of Haggis’s style; he never writes a simple and uncomplicated story. It is sincerely amazing to see his unlimited imagination through his writing, which with no doubt makes “Third Person” a true Haggis style film. Not only every single scene in the film is perfectly crafted, but the dialogue and the sequence of the scenes are in amazing sync.
It would be somewhat unfair to separate and mention just one of the actors, since the whole cast of “Third Person” delivers a solid performance. It is surprising to see James Franco actually performing, instead of just joking (as he did in “This is The End”). Mila Kunis has already proven to us that she can be as good as she was in “Black Swan” (by Darren Aronofsky); here again her performance is believable and touching. Olivia Wilde and Liam Neeson look stunning next to each other. Their screen chemistry is so obvious that it makes us wish to see more films with the two of them as lead actors.
In conclusion, “Third Person” is one of those films that will leave you stunned and speechless. From the beginning till the very end you will not feel how the time flies by, since the entire film is made in an astonishingly beautiful way that it leaves no time to be bored. With this film, Haggis once again creates another masterpiece – full of unpredictable lines, and a story, which is filled with disappointment, betrayal, love, sacrifice, passion and a willingness to do anything for the loved ones – even though the price you pay for it – is pain.