Director: Fernando Meirelles
Cast: Anthony Hopkins, Rachel Weisz, Jude Law
Watch 360 online in the UK: Netflix UK
Somewhere in London, a man is having sex with Rachel Weisz. In Vienna, a female prostitute is posing for topless photos. In America, Anthony Hopkins is getting on a plane. In the audience, people are falling asleep. This is 360, a global trundle around an endless wheel of boredom. You’d have more fun staring at a protractor for half an hour.
Inspired by Arthur Schnitzler’s play La Ronde, Fernando Meirelles’ film aims to look at the way strangers around the world are linked by relationships. But where Schnitzler’s play had the threat of syphilis to keep its sex roulette exciting, 360 is tenuously held together by its own sense of self-importance. And airplanes. Lots of shots of airplanes.
Individual stories intrigue, such as Sergei (Vladimir Vdovichenkov), a driver for a Russian gangster struggling to leave his marriage-threatening job. Others, like Ben Foster’s recovering sex offender, feel completely out of place. Peter Morgan’s dialogue is solid and so are the performances, but with barely 10 minutes of screen time to explore each character, you don’t get very far. Unless you’re Anthony Hopkins trying to deliver a monologue about redemption and the meaning of life in under two minutes – a ridiculous moment of pretention in an already over-bearing mess.
Do these people have any impact upon each other over the long 113 minutes? Maybe. But while the plots are cut together well, there’s no aim or point to the connections – or, crucially, you won’t care enough to work it out. It’s like Crash, but without the fun of playing Spot the Racist. All that’s left are Meirelles’ stylish shots of pretty cities, Daniel Rezende’s cracking editing, and Jude Law’s receding hairline. And the airplanes. Oh so many planes.