Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Cost of Brilliance

Author(s): Bryce
Location: CA

"The Cost of Brilliance"

Directed by: Stephen Frears
Written by: Todd Field and Alan Ball
Produced by: Bruce Cohen, and Brian Grazer

Main Cast

Kevin Spacey as Chris Kane
Channing Tatum as Kyle Morton
Paul Giamatti as Robert Tick
Olivia Thirlby as Bethany Collins

Tagline: "Everyone has skeletons in their closets, the question is: How do you get rid of them?"

Synopsis: Professor Chris Kane is known around the world as one of the best Professors to be committed to helping others and making life better. He has done outstanding work in the research of genetics, and has made many breakthroughs in the effort to finding a cure for cancer. But, what many may not know about this noble prize winner, is that the only thing bigger than his IQ score, are the skeletons in his closet. Aside from being a drug-addict, bipolar, and short-tempered, the biggest skeleton in Professor Kane's closet is the fact that he constantly has sex with many hookers, and is known to be a womanizer, a huge pervert, and a sex offender.

Robert Tick, the dean of the university that Professor Kane works at, can not afford to lose his most precious professor. Kane has gain the school many scholarships, donations, sponsors, and prestige. But, at the same time he can't let Professor Kane's habit get exposed by the media, it would utterly destroy the school. Luckily for Robert, there is always a Kyle Morton at every school. A student who barely got accepted into the school, has been making horrible grades, and has no more money to pay for school. Robert makes a deal with Kyle. If Kyle makes sure to keep Professor Kane in check, and makes sure to hide any skeletons that may leak out, Kyle will be given high grades and enough money for tuition.

Kyle eagerly accepts the deal, and over the coarse of the semester is in charge of making sure Kane's drugs disappear, his temper controlled, and his whore addiction kept tightly under wraps. As long as he does his job, Kyle's life couldn't be better. He even falls in love with his clumsy classmate Bethany Collins. But that's were the real problem starts. Bethany begins getting sexually harassed by Professor Kane. Professor Kane's sexual attraction to Bethany grows, and grows, until Kane can't help himself anymore. As Professor Kane attempts to rape Bethany, he accidently kills her. Kyle finds out later what happens, because he ends up being the one to cleanup the mess.

Now Kyle is faced with a personal, and moral dilemma. He could continue to be the "cleaner" for the university, and get a complete free ride in college. To add to that, Robert has promised to give him a "bonus" in the millions if he continues his work until he graduates. However, What Kyle's heart tells him to do is to get revenge himself, and kill Professor Kane. But, Kyle could also get revenge in other ways, like telling the world about Kane's dark secret. The only question remaining is what will Kyle do?

What the Press would say:

It seems that every year, there comes a film that not only entertains the audience, but raises a lot of questions in our head about society as well. A film that challenges society itself, and makes audiences feel they need to do something about our culture. That film this year is "The Cost of Brilliance". The film itself dives into many questions, but the one that I found most interesting is the simple question of "why must we hide ourselves?". Why must we try and create this illusional persona that may or may not even have traces of who we really are.The movie never really gives a definite answer, but that is what separates this movie from others of it's kind. Think of the movie's motives and themes like a multiple choice test, with questions that can have more than one answer. I found this part of the movie very enlightening, and intriguing.

The characters in the film are some of the most unique characters I've seen in a film in a while. The best part is that the actors are able to successfully do each character justice. Kevin Spacey plays Professor Chris Kane, a man that is too hard to be described with just one word. He's a genius, jerk, pervert, innovator, and overall a train-wreck. A character full of philosophy and riddles that he himself can not answer. Channing Tatum, who hasn't had much good roles, does a superb job at playing what seems to be the most recognizable character in the film. As Kyle Morton, Channing portrays a character full of desperation, but lacking any real common sense. It is because of this attribute that makes the character's eventual choice more tense, and more serious.

Stephen Frears has done an amazing job bringing this film to life, and delivering an effective film with an intriguing motive, fascinating characters, and entertaining plot. Its one of the years top movies, and one the academy will not ignore.

Best Picture
Best Director- Stephen Frears
Best Actor- Kevin Spacey
Best Actor- Channing Tatum
Best Supporting Actor- Paul Giamatti
Best Original Screenplay- Todd Field and Alan Ball
Best Film Editing
Best Cinematography

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