Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
Joel interviews the MIFF team to find out what's in this year's program announcement! Click to listen to our special SWITCHCast ep now.x
review, Human Capital, Human, Capital, film, movie, latest movies, new movie, movie ratings, current movie reviews, latest films, recent movies, current movies, movie critics, new movie reviews, latest movie reviews, latest movies out, the latest movies, review film, latest cinema releases, Australian reviews, cinema, cinema reviews, Marisa Tomei, Maya Hawke, Peter Sarsgaard, Liev Schreiber, Alex Wolff, Betty Gabriel, Aasif Mandvi, Paul Sparks, Fred Hechinger, Fredric Lehne, Marc Meyers, Crime, Drama, Remake, Romance film rating

HUMAN CAPITAL

★★★

INTANGIBLE ASSETS AND DRAMATIC PAYOFFS

BRISBANE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW
LATEST REVIEWS
By Jake Watt
11th October 2020

Bicycling home from work at a fundraising dinner, a waiter is struck by a car on a dark stretch of road. That's the catalyst for 'Human Capital', an ambitious drama from Marc Meyers, director of 'My Friend Dahmer'. The tendrils of the plot then unfurl, almost in a 'Rashomon'-like fashion, rewinding to a moment before the initial event, when all the main characters meet for the first time.

Based on a novel by Stephen Amidon and the 2013 Italian film 'Il Capital Unman', Oren Moverman's script moves back and forth, expanding from the hit-and-run to examine three families on a diverse economic and social spectrum. As their lives intersect, Moverman can repeat encounters and scenes from different angles.

The framework gives the filmmakers the freedom to cover a lot of territory. Like realtor Drew Hegel (Liev Schreiber, 'A Rainy Day in New York', 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'), on his second marriage and struggling with debt. He's an inveterate gambler with twins on the way who uses his teen daughter Shannon (Maya Hawke, 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood', 'Ladyworld') to wangle a meeting with hedge fund mogul Quint Manning (Peter Sarsgaard, 'Mr. Jones', 'Jackie'), setting in motion a financial deal that casts him way out of his depth.

'HUMAN CAPITAL' TRAILER

One bad choice leads to another, as Drew fakes his income on a financial filing, then takes out a loan he can't repay. He also can't communicate with Shannon, who disappears with her friend Jamie Manning (Fred Hechinger), and is hard-pressed to deal with his wife Ronnie (Betty Gabriel, 'Upgrade', 'Get Out'), a therapist who announces that she's pregnant.

No one in 'Human Capital' can be honest, least of all Carrie Manning (Marisa Tomei, 'The King of Staten Island', 'Spider-Man: Far From Home'), Quint's wife. A former actress in low-budget horror films, she now fills her days shopping aimlessly, crying in the back seat of her limo, and trying to find meaning by turning a derelict movie theatre into an arts centre. That effort leads to a betrayal by her husband and his lawyer, a furtive affair with a college professor, and conflict with Jamie.

Despite the film's clear intentions to treat its characters in a realistic, sympathetic way, 'Human Capital' feels less like Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'Babel' and more like Paul Haggis' 'Crash'.

Shannon has her own problems, including lingering resentment of her estranged mother, discovering that her boyfriend has his own identity issues, and an encounter with Ian Warfield (Alex Wolff, 'Hereditary'), one of Ronnie's patients. Turns out Ian's done time for drugs in a reform school, and has been ordered to see Ronnie for what he calls violent fantasies.

Despite the film's clear intentions to treat its characters in a realistic, sympathetic way, 'Human Capital' feels less like Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'Babel' and more like Paul Haggis' 'Crash'. Similarly, Meyers' is heavy-handed and 'Human Capital' seems slightly inert as a result.

However, the stellar cast makes just about every role interesting: Tomei adds more nuance to Carrie than you would expect, Sarsgaard's smarmy conceit as Quint is first-rate, and Schreiber is a big man who captures his character's smallness.

The highlight is the charismatic Maya Hawke, appearing here after an attention-grabbing part in 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood'. It takes time for the movie to focus on Shannon's story; when it does, everything starts to click. Hawke's scenes with Alex Wolff are amusing at first, before sliding into deeply emotional moments of soul-baring truth. As Ian's life takes a tragic turn, all the plot machinations and narrative tricks start to make sense.

An engrossing mystery, 'Human Capital' deserves credit for trying to deal with issues that affect adults, with the talented cast and carefully modulated performances as considerable bonuses.

FAST FACTS
RELEASE DATE: TBA
RUN TIME: 1h 35m
CAST: Marisa Tomei
Maya Hawke
Peter Sarsgaard
Liev Schreiber
Alex Wolff
Betty Gabriel
Aasif Mandvi
Paul Sparks
Fred Hechinger
Fredric Lehne
DIRECTOR: Marc Meyers
WRITER: Oren Moverman
PRODUCERS: Celine Rattray
Trudie Styler
Oren Moverman
Bert Marcus
Matthew Stillma
SCORE: Marcelo Zarvo
HumanCapitalMovie
HumanCapitalMov
TOP-RATED REVIEWS
Looking for more Brisbane International Film Festival reviews? Click here to check out our collection of this year's highlights. 
Umbrella Home Entertainment Prize Pack - Get copies of Gunda, King Otto and Relic to enjoy at home!
TRENDINGWIN UMBRELLA HOME ENTERTAINMENT PRIZE PACKGet copies of Gunda, King Otto and Relic to enjoy at home!
Cosmic Sin - A film that delivers on the promise of its title
TRENDINGCOSMIC SINA film that delivers on the promise of its title
Pocahontas - 25 years later, the colours of the wind are fading
TRENDINGPOCAHONTAS25 years later, the colours of the wind are fading
Revisiting 'Dark City' 20 years later - The most underrated and influential sci-fi film ever?
TRENDINGREVISITING 'DARK CITY' 20 YEARS LATERThe most underrated and influential sci-fi film ever?
The Keeper - The true story of the Nazi goalkeeper and the English girl
TRENDINGTHE KEEPERThe true story of the Nazi goalkeeper and the English girl
Jungle Cruise - Sailing into a new Disney classic adventure
TRENDINGJUNGLE CRUISESailing into a new Disney classic adventure
The World at War - The landmark documentary series restored in high definition
TRENDINGTHE WORLD AT WARThe landmark documentary series restored in high definition
Suicide Squad - A woefully dull and incomprehensible mess
TRENDINGSUICIDE SQUADA woefully dull and incomprehensible mess
The Princess Diaries - 20 years since Genovia found its princess
TRENDINGTHE PRINCESS DIARIES20 years since Genovia found its princess
River's Edge - The kids aren't alright
TRENDINGRIVER'S EDGEThe kids aren't alright
Matilda - Revolting children for 25 years
TRENDINGMATILDARevolting children for 25 years
Golden Voices - Immigration struggles with amusing challenges
TRENDINGGOLDEN VOICESImmigration struggles with amusing challenges
Boxing Day Movies 2020 - The year's biggest films bursting onto cinema screens
TRENDINGBOXING DAY MOVIES 2020The year's biggest films bursting onto cinema screens
Fanny Lye Deliver'd - Feminist folk horror
TRENDINGFANNY LYE DELIVER'DFeminist folk horror
The Last Horns of Africa - The danger, the heartache and the importance of saving the Rhinos
TRENDINGTHE LAST HORNS OF AFRICAThe danger, the heartache and the importance of saving the Rhinos
Monty Python's Flying Circus: The Complete Series - Sketches at a revolution
TRENDINGMONTY PYTHON'S FLYING CIRCUS: THE COMPLETE SERIESSketches at a revolution
25 Free-to-Watch Short Horror Films - The scariest shorts we uncovered online
TRENDING25 FREE-TO-WATCH SHORT HORROR FILMSThe scariest shorts we uncovered online
Aiyai: Wrathful Soul - Ambitious but unfocused Aussie horror
TRENDINGAIYAI: WRATHFUL SOULAmbitious but unfocused Aussie horror
Midsommar: The Director's Cut - Ari Aster elevates an already remarkable film to a masterpiece
TRENDINGMIDSOMMAR: THE DIRECTOR'S CUTAri Aster elevates an already remarkable film to a masterpiece
Inseparable Bros - A heartwarming tale about disability and the power of friendship
TRENDINGINSEPARABLE BROSA heartwarming tale about disability and the power of friendship
© 2011 - 2021 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Support SWITCH | Disclaimer | Contact Us!