What could Tim Burton have possibly seen in the story of a monotonous, marginally talented, yet enormously successful “artist"? Something of himself, perhaps? Another one of the director’s triumphs of production design over storytelling, as structurally spiritless as the ocular-enhanced, Children of the Damned urchins generally associated with the paintings Walter Keane (Christoph Waltz) appropriated from his wife, Margaret (Amy Adams), and passed off as his own creation. Waltz, badly miscast, brings an exasperating tinge of Broadway Danny Rose cloying condescension to every comment, inquiry, request, command, and exclamation the script requires him to utter. Everything in the film — from the overlit endeavors to reproduce the look of ‘50’s Technicolor to a Beach Boys cover version — looks and feels artificial. Burton had a chance to make a powerful statement on the struggle woman confront when trying to achieve artistic recognition, and instead settled for another childlike fairy tale. With Krysten Ritter in a role once reserved for Lisa Marie. (2014) — Matthew Lickona
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