Text: Manolis Kranakis
Playing with the rule of possibilities, ‘50/50’ by Jonathan Levine would be either one more viable sample of American independent cinema or one film, that can change your life. Somewhere in the middle, this film entails both… Adam is 27 years old, he is a journalist, and has cancer. And this is all you need to know about the third film by Jonathan Levine, one of the most interesting representatives of contemporary American cinema- the more experienced will remember ‘The Wackness’ of 2008 screened at the Athens International Film Festival ‘Premiere Nights.’ You will learn the rest, when you watch this weird blend of romantic and dramatic comedy, which dares to turn the tables on in a movie, whose protagonist is a moribund.
It is a movie, which revolves more around friendship than death and also a movie that doesn’t deal with the ‘life goes on’ worldview, but with the ‘death is a first- rate chance to live our life a bit better’ one, ‘50/50’ walks into a minefield of melodramatic traps, managing not to get caught by any of those. 50% of this accomplishment is owing to the script, which is freed from dramatic outbursts and clichés of similar films. The other 50% is owing to the leading duet, the great collaboration of Joseph Gordon Levitt and Seth Rogen who share the cinematic time as if they were best friends for years. Together they create the magnitude that is missing (as if there was missing any…) from this ‘small’ film. And together they form the ultimate film which, ok, won’t change your life, but at least will make you watch it from a different viewpoint.