Just when you thought Charlie Kaufman couldn't possibly have anymore mind-melting tricks up his sleeve, out comes Synecdoche, New York to blow everything out of the water. Like David Lynch's epic Inland Empire, Charlie Kaufman goes all out to create an incredibly dense, complex and unique work of art like there's never been before.
His decision to direct turns out to be not only daring but a blessing as it makes Synecdoche as bleak and real visually as it is in its philosophy and tone. Philip Seymour Hoffman proves once again why he's one of the best actors around with a subtle, touching and heartbreaking performance which should receive an Oscar gong come next year, if there's any justice. The rest of the cast is unexpected but absolutely spot on with everyone giving it their best shot.
Charlie Kaufman's fascination with the human mind reaches its peak here and this is by far his deepest and most fascinating work to date. Synecdoche New York is by no means an easy watch however as even though it is peppered with sharp humour and delightful surrealism, its structure is so disjointed it's inevitable you'll be lost at one point or another. This is a film which demands repeat viewings and it's very likely that everytime, something new and interesting will pop up, leaving you pondering about its various meanings for days on end. Synecdoche New York is not only Charlie Kaufman's tour de force, it's a surreal masterpiece and the best film of 2009 so far, bar none.
More impatient viewers will be quickly alienated but those who stick with it and take the time to explore its countless facets, will be left in awe of its dark, depressing beauty. Genius.