Christian is a young, calculating trust fund baby who keeps his funds intact by making low budget feature films in an effort to appease his father. On his latest project he discovers that his actress girlfriend,Tara, is having an affair with the lead actor, Ryan. A very controlling individual, Christian spirals out of control, engaging in a sinister game of deceit which soon escalates to bloody murder. From the opening scene of Paul Schrader's The Canyons it's clear that this is a Bret Easton Ellis screenplay. Every character in this film is incredibly selfish and fickle individuals whose actions are only for themselves. Christian is a character that is presented as a very cold person emotionally but yet the whole premise of the film revolves around him becoming sensitive and enraged when discovering of Tara's hidden affair. I guess the idea is Christian's loss of control over Tara is what drives him to murder but the film never takes the time necessary to fully develop this idea. Perhaps the main failure in achieving this lies in the suspect acting of the film with Lindsay Lohan, Nolan Gerard Funk, and James Deen all giving pretty sub-par performances (and that is being nice). Like much of Bret Easton Ellis' work the film captures the vapid, emptiness of Los Angeles culture where money, selfishness and greed are king. This is a predominant theme which probably comes off a little too heavy-handed (this is typical for Bret Easton Ellis). Paul Schrader does bring his A-game to the direction, with some nice brooding compositions that combined with a nice amount of high contrast lighting reallly aides in giving the film a unique feel and atmosphere. The Canyons is not nearly as bad as I was lead to believe and there is a good movie in here somewhere, but unfortunately Paul Schrader and company were unable to find it among the generic Easton Ellis-isms.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.