Finally, this is a review that can never have as much dimension as the ‘New York Times’ (ruling Mr. Scott out of this) or maybe even ‘Washington Post’, predominantly because my house doesn’t overlook an anti-Semitic scenario. Not even a Semitic scenario at that, and that’s why I can’t touch upon the content of ‘The Believer’ as much as I can about the effect it produced.
I wonder how much this man can do, you know. This is not his only dilemmatic role, although Dan Dunne definitely had a way higher level of clarity on chaos than Daniel Balint, who plays a Jew who wants to blow Jews up. The world calls it ‘self-hating’, I frankly do not understand the relevance of the term. I don’t believe Danny hates himself but just the idea that he’s one among the kind of people he can never bring himself to like, although he is sub-consciously emotionally attached to his religion, particularly because he believes that he’s one of the very few who has actually understood it. What he feels is hatred towards the rest who don’t show as much clarity as he does, just like a laid-back, angst-ridden teen would hate an academically successful geek in school, partly because he thinks he understands the world better than the science-hogger can, possibly. He is, however, afraid or mortified to admit the fact that he is a Jew, although there is the substantiated opinion inside his head that one must know in order to even try to hate. To ‘be’ isn’t the same as to ‘know’.
I couldn’t find enough conflict in Danny to die, really. At least, maybe not this way, it could have been better if it was an inescapable situation where he just gives up fighting and gives in. Thought it looked a little too amateurish, to be honest. Ryan Gosling sparkles, fizzes, explodes even and yeah, he’s pretty much the bomb, it’s like everything’s on him. I cannot say that the ideas expressed in the film, be it the anti-Semitic theory based on sexuality, that which even goes as far as including Marx, are in anyway buyable, but I can safely state that Gosling’s vigour and energy in this performance made me raise as little questions about the context as possible, and I personally liked the idea of loving a Jew to destroy him, like a Godly finality curbs any sort of further development (at least that’s how I interpreted it). Again, it helps me if beautiful women play substantial parts, like Carla Moebius (Summer Phoenix) and the fascination she shows not for a ‘religion’ as such, but its language, which she finds intriguing. Sort of told that there’s more to religion than hatred, or that there’s more to religion than the religion itself, which could help one hate it less, like maybe a digression into Persian beauty to avert anti-Islamic tendencies (I’m just making an irrelevant parallel here, it’s not a big deal).
I’ve no verdict on this film, I just plainly thought it’s been a while. But yeah, thumbs up for Ryan Gosling, it’s certainly soothing to know that the man’s been in quite a substantial haul of roles.