- Director: Dan Gilroy
- Writer: Dan Gilroy
- Producer: Jennifer Fox
What an unmitigated disaster this film is...
It doesn't know what it is. It's not a horror...not scary in the slightest. It's not a comedy...not funny [apart from one line]. And, it's most definitely not a satire...satire requires a certain amount of intelligence...this has none.
So...the hype [aka: The USP] surrounding this film is/was: Jake Gyllenhaal goes gay and bares his bum! He's 'gay' for 5 minutes and [then] promptly becomes a feverishly devoted heterosexual. Lovely as it is, his bum gets 5 whole seconds of screen-time.
John Malkovich is - ridiculously - under-used. Toni Collette is - stupidly - under-employed. Zawe Ashton shouldn't have been used at all...what a terrifically dismal and wooden performance she delivers. She and the writer/director - clearly - out of their respective depths.
It is a film about [the interpretation of] art...and, the art is [according to this layman's opinion] - surprisingly and genuinely - good. Pity about everything else!
The Art World deserves to be mocked, ridiculed and provoked. Thankfully, their 'influences' rarely reach into the pockets of ordinary working folks. They have created an elite [of finance, snobbery and taste] all for their self-centred-selves. A well-executed exhibition of their frivolous foibles is always a welcome treat...unfortunately, this [horrendously titled] film is not it!
In the cutthroat world of fine-art trading and representation, up-and-coming agent Josephina (Zawe Ashton) stumbles across a secret weapon: hundreds of dazzling paintings left behind after an elderly tenant in her building dies. Ignoring the instructions the clandestine artist left to destroy his work, she promptly starts circulating the paintings, which soon attract the attention of the heavy hitters around her—including her boss Rhodora (Rene Russo), art critic (and Josephina’s sometime lover) Morf (Jake Gyllenhaal), and competing collectors, managers, and curators like Bryson (Billy Magnussen) and Gretchen (Toni Collette). Yet as the deceased artist’s portraits gain posthumous acclaim, they also awaken something imperceptible and sinister that threatens to punish those who have profited from his work.
Master of suspense Dan Gilroy (Nightcrawler) has assembled an all-star cast for this dark, uproarious, and painfully accurate spoof of the art world. With strong supporting turns by John Malkovich, Daveed Diggs, and Natalia Dyer, Velvet Buzzsaw invites us into a traditionally insular world that’s suddenly splattered wide open, where art and commerce collide with dire consequences.