Alejandro Iñárritu’s Birdman features Michael Keaton as Riggan Thomas, a washed-up superhero franchise movie actor who seeks relevance by staging a Broadway play. To accomplish this he surrounds himself with the most dysfunctional cast in New York City, which leads to problem after problem as they progress toward opening night. The illusion that the entire film was shot in a single take is brilliantly executed, and navigating the labyrinthine halls of the theater as the camera follows one character or another adds a claustrophobic madness that mirrors the madness of the characters. Each character, like Riggan, is seeking relevance, a desire to be noticed and important. For Riggan, this includes some super powered fantasies that the film lets you decide are real or not. Birdman is an engaging and entertaining black comedy.
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