Synecdoche, New York
Rating: L (R)
NEW YORK (CNS) — The following is a capsule review of a movie recently reviewed by the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Surreal, pessimistic drama in which a theater director (Philip Seymour Hoffman), deserted by his artist wife (Catherine Keener), endlessly rehearses a constantly expanding autobiographical play while battling bizarre illnesses and seeking emotional fulfillment from his second spouse (Michelle Williams) and an on-again-off-again lover (Samantha Morton). Writer Charlie Kaufman’s directorial debut, an ambitious meditation on life, love, creativity and death, though impressively acted — especially by Hoffman — makes only sporadic references to faith and presents both artistic and personal failure as inevitable. Strong sexual content, including brief graphic sexual activity, adultery, rear and upper female nudity, frequent rough and some crude language, a few uses of profanity and a suicide. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L — limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R — restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.