Oppenheimer -- A Miss

Stetson Hat

I was so disappointed in Oppenheimer. It wasn't terrible, but what a missed opportunity.

Mystifying. Part of the job of a biopic is to give you insight into what a person is thinking and feeling. Especially for this movie, which is basically about this question: what would it be like to be the person who made these terrible weapons? I understand he's complicated, and it's complicated. But instead of dialog, or even some outright explaining, this movie leans on of Cillian Murphy staring into the distance or adjusting his hat.

Women. There were plenty of interesting women they could have brought in, either contemporaries, or from academia, or the Manhattan project itself. There are only two women in the movie: one is a sex object with mental health issues (Pugh); the other is a mother/lush with a surprisingly sharp wit, but only for a minute (Blunt). The sex scene, oddly using Oppenheimer's most famous line, was gratuitous and super weird.

Strauss. I'm not invested at all in the conflict with Admiral Strauss. Paraphrasing the good folks at The Incomparable, "I don't care if some guy becomes Commerce Secretary in the Eisenhower Cabinet."

Given how much I like the history and the science of this period, I was really pulling for this movie. Dang.


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