Ivonne Venegas
Lisa Schwarzbaum
May 08, 2009 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Julia

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
138 minutes
performer
Tilda Swinton
director
Erick Zonca
author
Michael Collins

We gave it an B-

This overlong, lurchy homage to John Cassavetes’ 1980 film Gloria is a mess, but a fascinating one, given Swinton’s desperately avid performance in the title role. The star flings herself into the skin of a wild alcoholic in L.A. who kidnaps a kid (Aidan Gould) for ransom and winds up in Mexico — there’s a splashy scene when she crashes her car through to Tijuana. Nothing coheres in Erick Zonca’s movie, Julia, only his second since his striking 1998 debut, The Dreamlife of ?Angels; halfway through, Julia becomes a competent, rather than pass-out, drunk. But just try to take your eyes off her. B?

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