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Demolition

"Another bravado performance by Jake Gyllenhaal, a sterling film by Jean-Marc Vallée, and an all around impressive look into grieving." - Hollywood Reporter

“After a series of punishing lead roles, Jake Gyllenhaal changes gears for Demolition – a film that once again puts his character through the wringer, though in ways that are offbeat, exuberant and occasionally quite hilarious.

Those three terms best describe this lively new dramedy from Quebecois director Jean-Marc Vallee, which tells the story of a Wall Street financier whose wife dies in a car accident, leaving him to pick up – or in this case, tear apart – the pieces of a life that never really felt like his own. It’s a unique take on what could otherwise be a morbidly depressing tale of loss and grief, dishing out tons of energy and spats of devilish humor. Gyllenhaal once again delivers an all-consuming performance.

"In his last two movies, The Dallas Buyers Club and Wild, Vallee had his lead characters go through trials by fire in order to achieve a certain peace with themselves. That’s once again the modus operandi here. Though instead of focusing on a man who takes his sorrow out on himself or others, the widower at the center of Demolition takes it out on lots of designer furniture, high-tech appliances and eventually, his entire house>

"When we first meet hotshot investor Davis (Gyllenhaal), his wife Julia (Heather Lind) has just died. Following the advice of his father-in-law (Chris Cooper) all-too literally, Davis takes his life apart “piece by piece” in order to rebuild it without Julia.

"This prompts Davis to pick up a box of tools and pull apart anything that bugs him: a leaky refrigerator, a creaky bathroom door or an office computer that keeps freezing. Such actions are complemented by his propensity to be brutally honest with those around him. Using jumpcuts, flashbacks and lots of rapid sight gags to keep a dynamic tone throughout these early sections, Vallee contrasts Davis’s off-kilter attitude and loopy hijinks with the hard realities he refuses to face. He’s not exactly a sociopath, but rather someone who goes to extremes in order to avoid the dark pit of his existence.

"Gyllenhaal makes it all feel compellingly real, turning Davis into a man who does some wild and questionable things throughout the movie, but also makes us laugh at the same time.’ - Hollywood Reporter

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