Downsizing: A Major Downer


Before you let the title I wrote give you a knee-jerk reaction, I think I need to give you this disclaimer: This is only my opinion. My husband loved this film and disagrees with me on this review. I think it’s just how you take the film, personally.

Here is the gist of the movie: Alexander Payne, the director, posts sort of a social experiment. If you knew that you would be richer/wealthier and could essentially live life anew, would you take it? What if this decision required you to leave all that you know (work, home, family, friends) and shrink yourself to around 5 inches tall? Would you still agree to the terms?

This is the question that the character Paul (played by Matt Damon) answers as he explores his new life. He takes this opportunity to explore a better life, ends up finding new friends, and finds his true self along the way. He meets an interesting neighbor Dusan (played by Christoph Waltz) , as well as becomes attached to a cleaning lady (who provides most of the comedic relief) named Ngoc (played by Hong Chau).

I guess my main concerns with this movie were the supporting cast. Let me explain first:

  • I adore Christoph Waltz. He was amazing in Tarantino’s films. Seeing him in this film as an average guy who throws lavish parties ‘just because’ is a little off-putting to me. Again, just my opinion.
  • I spent a majority of the film trying to figure out if Hong Chau’s voice was dubbed in English post-production or if it is her true accent when speaking English. No disrespect to the actress at all, I liked her character, it was just one factor that kept bothering me.

Overall, I thought the film came off as a little preachy with the “saving the environment” undertones. I come to the movies to escape, not to feel bad that I don’t recycle my Coke cans or I don’t do more to protect the polar ice caps.

My rating: 2 reels out of 5.


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