Welcome to Marwen Review
Welcome to Marwen is a very odd and really muddled film that is just all over the place. It feels as though it has a distinct split between this fantasy landscape and the real world where a man faces intense PTSD. While the two could come together, they feel so separated that when they merge it becomes awkward. You could potentially have an interesting look at a broken man after a traumatic experience, or a really wild figure based world that helps fill the gaps of this sorrowed life a man now lives.
Instead we have things going back and forth to intersect at points where you can't quite tell what the purpose is. At times it becomes random, loud and silly. It had a rather long run time as well, it perhaps could have been more concise. It definitely conveyed a clear sense of a narrative, despite being sort of boring and bloated at times. It dove into some details too much, wild avoiding others. It also fell into some really clear positions for the various characters as they felt empty, lacking unique substance.
On one side of things you have Mark Hogancamp (Steve Carell) who is obviously very ill and traumatized. He's the ultra sad individual that has paths to take to be better, but ignores those. He is ultimately your chosen hero for this. A clear love interest, with a side one that's easily available. It just felt lazy in terms of characters and portrayed most of the individuals as generally useless. Main cast aside is an interesting group of people in the forms of dolls.
They're shown, but very lightly and given little to no character development. They're basically a series of empty shells that all become the same character over time. Some development, or more of a showcase for each could have made them matter a little. This all goes back to the comparison of there being a fight for screen time between this interesting fantasy setting and a broken sad real world. Neither get any real progress and just sort of trail off by the end.
Welcome to Marwen is an awkward, muddled mess that lacks creativity in either of the distinctly different worlds it presents. You have a bunch of dolls walking around which could have been interesting. Then in the real world we have a completely broken man that doesn't do much aside from mope around. There are some clear themes in terms of what's causing the problems, but there seems to be many and none get much care. Despite aiming for emotions, it doesn't come close to triggering them.
The acting was relatively weak here and Carell has done much better in the past. Some of the characters were forgotten along the way and nothing gets too much of a resolution. I thought the ultra intense doll world was neat, they had some really fresh setups though it doesn't present much of anything that adds to the purpose of the film. This was really just a long, boring and odd movie. There were minor laughs, but it was a relatively sad and somber event that might put one to sleep as I was having trouble keeping in this.
Welcome to Marwen Review at Theater with Standard Viewing
Screening Provided by NBC Universal
Rating Overall: 3.8