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‘Birdman’ soars into theaters and award shows

Official+movie+poster+for+%27Birdman%2C%27+a+film+by+Alejandro+I%C3%B1%C3%A1rritu.+
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‘Birdman’ soars into theaters and award shows

Official movie poster for 'Birdman,' a film by Alejandro Iñárritu.

Official movie poster for 'Birdman,' a film by Alejandro Iñárritu.

Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Official movie poster for 'Birdman,' a film by Alejandro Iñárritu.

Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Official movie poster for 'Birdman,' a film by Alejandro Iñárritu.

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4.5stars

A washed-up actor who has fallen from celebrity status struggles to once again make a name for himself in the dog-eat-dog world of Hollywood. It’s a typical movie plot, one we’ve all heard before — but never quite like this.

Alejandro Iñárritu, director of three Academy Award-nominated films (Amores perros in ‘02, Babel in ‘06 and Biutiful in ‘10), puts a creative twist in his newest film, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance). A black comedy, Birdman follows the life of actor Riggan Thompson (Michael Keaton), who was once famous for playing an iconic superhero known as The Birdman. The story focuses on Thompson’s attempt to regain his previous stardom by putting on a Broadway production.

The film takes place in the days leading up to opening night, and it deals with topics as complex and far-ranging as drug addiction, to family issues, the meaning of life and why we are here. The complexity of the script didn’t deter from it’s enjoyability one bit. Iñárritu manages to include all of these elements in a seemingly simple message that was truly thought-provoking.

The star-studded cast includes Zach Galifinakis, Emma Stone, and Academy Award-nominated Edward Norton and Naomi Watts, so it’s no surprise that the acting in the film is beyond incredible. In an ironic fiction-mirrors-fact twist, of course, movie-goers will recall that Keaton once played an iconic superhero in Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992).

Birdman has already won numerous awards and has been nominated for even more. It’s expected to be a front-runner for most categories at this year’s Oscars, and it deserves the hype. It’s hilarious, heartfelt and dramatic, and it even has a taste of action that American film-goers so enjoy.

Birdman is a must-see for any movie aficionado, as well as anyone who just wants to see a good film.

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‘Birdman’ soars into theaters and award shows