Cole (Machine Gun Kelly) is a rock star. It may seem that he does nothing and day after day burns the money that has fallen on him as if by magic, but in fact the musician is recording a new album. More precisely, the producers write some tracks with his hands – the fact is that Cole is permanently drunk and most of the time does not understand what he is doing or talking to anyone. But the real problems begin when the star sobers up and descends from heaven to earth.
The first thing that attracts attention in “Taurus” is, of course, the performer of the role of Cole Coulson Baker, better known as Machine Gun Kelly. The once popular rapper in 2020 abruptly changed his sound to pop punk and almost simultaneously began to pay much more attention to his acting career. For example, in the films of Tim Sutton, this is his second major role, the first was in the western The Last Son.
The second thing that immediately catches the eye both at the level of reading the list of those involved in the creation of the picture, and directly when viewing it, is the figure of director and screenwriter Tim Sutton. Cinephile sensation of the early 2010s: in the 2020s, he is already a frequenter of the parallel programs of major European festivals. His indifferent to all living style of presentation is difficult to confuse with anything. And it doesn’t matter at all whether Sutton takes on a western, an action movie (“All Roads Lead to Donnybrook”), a post-doc (“Dark Night”), or a pseudo-biopic about a rock star. They say that it was created based on the biography of Mac Miller, but in this case it does not matter. Be that as it may, the desolate spaces of American cities are much nicer to the director than the characters of his own films.
The “Taurus” rests on these two whales. Colson Baker feels like a glove in the frame, and it doesn’t matter at all how much the rapper actually has in common with the character, and what is just acting. Baker had the opportunity to merge with the hero into a single insane whole for the last 10 years, and since this did not happen, then, obviously, some kind of strong partition exists. But it is almost impossible for a non-fan to notice the border, which means that the MGK plays its role perfectly. Everything else here is a typical Tim Sutton, slowly pumping out the air from everywhere: both from the cinema hall and from the action on the screen. Trying on a variety of genres, but in fact all of his paintings are described in one word – “anemia”. At first, this style looked something innovative, but by the seventh film, the most viewer-friendly tricks would have become boring, to say nothing of those that are rather anti-viewer and deliberately deprive the observer of empathy in relation to what is happening.
Taurus, according to the Old Testament, is a false God, the first idol created by people. The biblical calf was crushed by Moses, the prophet of God. An early 21st century Taurus, a rock star worshiped by fans and worshiped by producers, is crushed by the remnants of humanity in Cole. So you can come to the conclusion that, according to Sutton, God is in everyone and in some people, especially talented ones, he manifests itself more strongly: with one hand they create masterpieces, and with the other they punish themselves for ignoring the vocation. Maybe so, or maybe the whole film is really just a ridiculous anecdote supposedly about Mozart, who “wrote a requiem all night and then died.”
Be that as it may, Sutton continues to bend his line with the most inhibited and unemotional presentation of the simplest plots. Perhaps all this is generally a deadpan comedy, from which, however, few people find it funny. In the end, it is for the comedies that Sutton has not yet decided to take on. The director’s next film will again be a tragedy, but this time not about gentrification (“Funny Face”) or the untimely death of a rock star, but about how a father avenges a daughter crippled by a neighbor’s dog. So, Sutton’s God, apparently, really exists, but he tries to discern (and therefore show) him exclusively in a punishing incarnation and, moreover, in an airless space, as if it is more visible. The approach is frankly petty and one-sided, however, it seems that this is how everything was conceived: like a small simple movie from which you know exactly what to expect – a monotonous story about how bad people got what they deserved from somewhere above.