Downsizing – Shrinking With Success

Alexander Payne’s Downsizing hit the theaters worldwide on December 22, 2017. This film, featuring stars Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig, gives an audience much to be entertained by. This rated R film best fits a teenage-adult crowd, while young children may be offended by occasional sexual references, bad language, and drug use. Overall, the movie appeals primarily to an adult crowd due to the subject matter of living a high-stress, unfulfilled life.  The film maintains a constant pace after introducing the story and setting the scene.

The program starts off by introducing the audience to the typical life of married couple, Paul and Audrey Safranek, played by Damon and Wiig. Paul and Audrey live a stressful life as human beings in the working world, until they consider downsizing… not into just a smaller house and town, but into 5 inch tall human beings. This is a process that some of their friends have undertaken, and they claim to live their very best life because of it. The two decide to try the irreversible switch out…however their transition goes anything but smoothly.

The response was underwhelming to the Cape Henry community as few people have seen the movie or have been interested in the story line.  Since the odds were low on teen viewers around our community, some of the students in the Cape Henry community were asked to watch the trailer to the movie to determine whether they would personally watch the movie and where, and if they would consider the downsizing transformation themselves – if that were to ever be physically possible in our reality.

After viewing the trailer, George Selamaj ‘19 shared, “There is no moral, and the plot made very little sense. I am confused about what the point was that the producer was trying to get across.” This confusion was shared by several more students as they watched the trailer and shared a similar view.

However, Marshall Joyce ’19 became inspired to go see this movie after he was asked to watch the movie trailer. “I really like Matt Damon.  Any movie that he makes an appearance in, I will gladly watch it. If I had to choose, I would watch it in theaters instead of waiting for it to come out (at Redbox or on DVD), because I have always liked the real theater experience and the thrill of being there.” When asked if he would make the transition to a “downsized” person, Joyce responded with, “Only if I got more money by doing so!”

Cape Henry has mixed reviews about this movie, just like the reviewers online do. Mixed reviews come naturally with any movie, and likely was a determining factor in its limited success so far.  After just about 4 weeks in theaters, this $68 million dollar film has a disappointing profit of $22.9 million. Even with big stars Kristen Wiig and Matt Damon featured in the movie,  audiences lost attraction to this film with its twisted plot and little action to follow.