georgie’s review published on Letterboxd:
at the forty-six minute mark of this film, zendaya asks weakly, "are you done?" and john david washington sighs and replies, "not even fucking close." i looked at the run time and saw that i had an entire hour left of this film and i thought to myself... wow. art does imitate life.
if you wanna watch a movie where a couple fights with each other for what feels like ages, watch BEFORE MIDNIGHT. watch MARRIAGE STORY. you don't need to watch MALCOLM & MARIE.
if you wanna witness a story based on a creator's real-life relationship, watch THE LAST FIVE YEARS. watch MARRIAGE STORY again. you don't need to watch MALCOLM & MARIE!
if you wanna watch a movie in which a relationship is falling apart and someone uses the word "solipsistic" for truly no reason, watch BLACK BEAR. it's not a great movie but it's definitely not as bad as MALCOLM & MARIE.
hey, does anybody here have sam levinson's contact info? no reason, i just want to let him know that just because his movie is in black and white doesn't mean i'm gonna take it seriously.
also while i'm here, does anyone have connections to netflix's marketing team? no reason, i just want to know why MALCOLM & MARIE is branded as "sensual" and "romantic" when the only romantic thing about it is my personal romantic feelings towards zendaya, thank you very much.
i want you all to know that i almost never quit watching films midway through. i one hundred percent believe in seeing a movie through because maybe by the end it'll have something interesting to say. but after forty-six minutes of this, i've genuinely seen enough. i'm this heated because i cannot even begin to tolerate a deeply horrible script (this shit is bad. it's so bad. i'm so sorry it's just bad.) about a man who's blatantly emotionally abusive and manipulative to his girlfriend who's literally just trying to mind her own business and probably get out of this toxic relationship! if the movie actually villainized him, maybe i could handle it, but sam levinson is trying to make me feel sorry for him! and i will not! and the fact that this is based on an argument he had with his wife one time troubles me! i'm sure it wasn't as big of a blow up as this, but i don't understand why he thought anyone would want to watch his weird projection of a fight he once had when there's absolutely no substance here at all.
and i am all the more angry because this film is going to be seen by way too many people on netflix, and it's going to provoke some garbage discourse about what constitutes emotional abuse. twitter is going to be insufferable. truly. and this is the part of the review where i disclose on letterboxd dot com for the millionth time that As Someone Who's Experienced Emotional Abuse, this is content that i do not fuck with! i'm mad! i'm mad.
love of my life zendaya is doing her best with what she has here. she smokes cigarettes at least twice. she looks great doing it. beautiful gown, beautiful gown. looking forward to whatever work she has coming up in 2021 because it'll certainly be better than this.