I had high expectations for The Glass Castle because of the combination of director Destin Daniel Cretton and Brie Larson, who together did the amazing film Short Term 12. I think that if some little things had been tweaked from this film, The Glass Castle would have been a standout, but because of those little things, it instead becomes a very forgettable film.
My main thing about this movie is its uneven tone. I can often forgive that aspect of a film because I understand that you need ups and downs, the problem is that those two tones that are in the film feel so disconnected that it’s often jarring. It’s something that could have been fixed easily, by probably just putting everything in chronological order and so have the tone change with the actions that were taking place on screen but because that wasn’t done, we end up with a film that just can’t quite decide what it wants to be.
And it’s a shame really because the tone takes you out of the amazing acting that is taking place on screen. Brie Larson is like always stellar and deserves all the praise she gets with her roles. The pairings in the film also work really well. All the kids are great together, including the scenes with Woody Harrelson and Naomi Watts. I think the best chemistry is definitely between Larson and Harrelson really.
The Glass Castle is based on a memoir and so it’s hard to watch without thinking that this happened to someone, that is real life. And maybe if you look at it that way you can forgive it’s faults. But not completely. Is it perfect? No. Did I enjoy it? Yes. But will I remember it in 10 days? Probably not, and that’s a real shame.