Have you ever fallen asleep during a movie, just for like 15 minutes, and then wake up and wonder if you've missed something significant? That's how a good portion of Aloha felt like. Hell, the first 15 minutes of the movie I was wondering if maybe I had missed something. Was I late to the movie?
I can see why Aloha has been getting beat up by the critics. It's so scattered and disjointed. Most of the movie I'm trying to tie things together that the movie should be doing. I have no problem with having to figure things out on your own, but this was a case where it was just too distracting. It felt like large chunks of the movie and character interaction was missing. Left on the editing floor perhaps?
It's also super melodramatic, which is magnified by the fact that you don't have a deep understanding of all the character relationships. It's all forced and felt rushed. It's like when they bring out your entree at that same time as your salad and appetizers. Don't force feed me everything at once.
This also had the distinction of have a fantastic cast, but somehow nearly everyone (except maybe for Rachel McAdams) felt miscast. It's a shame because I felt like the actors were trying, but the direction, or the script, or the editing really let them down. On the other hand, can you imagine Emma Stone or Rachel McAdams instead of Renee Zellweger in Jerry Maguire?
I will admit that I kind of liked the ending. It was surprisingly emotional, but in a better movie where I was more invested, it would have affected me more. I also really liked the music, but that doesn't give the story a pass.
Aloha is one of those films that feels a lot longer than it actually is. I thought I'd been watching the film for well over two hours by the time it was all over (it's a hour and 45 minutes).
It's not the kind of bad where you feel insulted or anything like that, it just doesn't work as well as you'd like. This is a rental. Maybe if we get a director's cut it might flow a little better, so hopefully we'll get something like that. Otherwise, watch The Descendants instead. It's a better movie set in Hawaii.
2 (out of 5) Death Stars