R | 2h 22min | Crime, Drama | 12 Mar 2021 (Argentina) | Movie
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 37 % Rotten (Critics), 74 % Fresh (Audience)
Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Writers: Angela Russo-Otstot, Jessica Goldberg, Nico Walker
Stars: Tom Holland, Ciara Bravo, Jack Reynor
IMDb summary: Cherry drifts from college dropout to army medic in Iraq – anchored only by his true love, Emily. But after returning from the war with PTSD, his life spirals into drugs and crime as he struggles to find his place in the world.
PLEASE BE AWARE BEFORE YOU READ ON WE ARE NOT SPOILER-FREE. THANK YOU.
Cherry Movie Review
Critics the world over are “umming” and “arring” about Tom Holland and his latest movie release, Cherry. If you’re a film fan that loves ratings, you’ll be surprised to see just how different the ratings are across the board for this film. Audiences seemed to enjoy it a whole lot more than the critics. Perhaps that’s a sign some critics are well, too critical? That’s not for us to say, but our critique of Cherry is somewhere in-between Tom Holland’s finest work and the worst movie he’s ever been attached to. This is our Cherry Movie Review.
Let’s start with the obvious elephants in the room. Yes, there is a lot of drug use and Tom Holland gives himself a handjob. There is also a fine line between “this will be great for your career” and “well, that could have been better”. Why is it so difficult for writers and directors to express satire and dark comedy in a way that supports the narrative of the story?
Well, if the RT ratings are anything to go by, the audiences are loving Tom Holland in a semi-serious movie role. The critics, however, not so much. They think this film misses the mark with its target audience completely and it’s just too pretentious. It’s kinda like someone is trying way too hard to sell this actor and this film to the critics who are going to rate it on Rotten Tomatoes you know, where it matters.
But hey, that’s okay. Because Tom has grown as an actor as a result of this experience and he was well and truly 120 per cent devoted to this role. He wanted to bring it to screen and do the best job he could of telling this person’s story to someone or anyone that cared. We haven’t yet scoured the internet for Nico Walker’s thoughts on the film. We’re guessing that Nico Walker probably didn’t like what was done with his semi-truthful life story.
So to clarify for anyone that doesn’t know why Tom Holland is doing all of these screwed-up things, he is portraying a real person named Cherry in the film but loosely based on the semi-autobiographical book by Nico Walker. Wikipedia refers to the book as “semi-autobiographical” which means some of it happened and some of it didn’t and they’re not going to tell you what is and isn’t true. Nico Walker is the only one in the know about that.
But does it really matter if the story is true or not? Yes, it does. Because some people will judge “true stories” a lot harsher than fiction. And they won’t take too kindly to anyone making a movie about the horrors of war and drug addiction with a satirical narrative that doesn’t work. And that is where Cherry really falls over like… entirely on its face.
Does your audience want to hear your lead actor poke fun at his own tragic existence? Perhaps that is the opposite of what the Russo’s and the writers were trying to achieve? Maybe the fans got it wrong and the critics all got it right? Maybe it’s just shitty filmmaking and even poorer writing? As for Tom Holland, we think he carried himself well in this film. He didn’t seem or come across as fake in anything he did and becoming a drug-addicted felon with suicidal thoughts is not an easy stretch for most actors let alone someone in their 20s. Tom Holland did alright. Look elsewhere, please. The writing? The direction? The direction by the Russo brothers has come under heavy fire by some critics.
We’re putting a tick in the box next to Tom Hollands acting but we’re not supporting any other part of this film because it’s way too senseless. If you want to watch actors mock tragic circumstances with a story that makes sense, we recommend Trainspotting.
But if you’re still wanting more of that Cherry, here’s the trailer:
If you like our content, you can follow us on WordPress here, on Letterboxd, on Twitter or Instagram.
Don’t forget to check out our podcast updated weekly right here.
Thanks for your support!
Freelance entertainment writer and reviewer. Visit my blog on https://thebrokenquill.com.