Paterson | Review

Another movie I was desperate to see before the end of the year but sadly couldn’t attend was Jim Jarmusch’s PATERSON. Lucky for Salty, Kernel Jack was able to come to the party and get it reviewed for us all #yayJack. PATERSON is out on December 22nd in Australia from Madman Films. It is rated M and runs for 118mins. Please note it is on a limited release around the country – click HERE for a list of where you can see it. Enjoy Jack’s thoughts…..all the best……JK.


PATERSON, for me, is an interesting movie to review. For reasons that are beyond me, I struggle to put words to paper when it comes to this movie. When the film came a close, I couldn’t formulate any thoughts. I couldn’t come up with a description of what I’d just witnessed. Instead, I sat in silence for a moment or two, watching the credits roll on by. Since then, I’ve had some time to think about it, and to formulate an opinion, and while I’m still struggling to find some of the right words to describe my thoughts on PATERSON, it’s safe to say that I loved it.


Paterson (Adam Driver) image



PATERSON is a strange little movie that’s very simple in plot. It’s a weeklong look into the life of a young man named Paterson (Adam Driver), who hilariously lives in the state of Paterson, New Jersey. He wakes up naturally at the same time every morning, getting up and going out to his job as a bus driver. Paterson follows the same routine day after day, but it’s a routine he’s grown accustomed to. He likes it, and for a lot of this movie, he keeps to this routine, as we all do in our day-to-day lives.

In his spare time, Paterson likes to writes. He has a fondness towards poetry, and as we’re shown in the film, he’s an awfully good poet. His wife Laura (Golshifteh Farahani) is very supportive of his work, wishing for him to share his poems with the world, something he’s very reluctant to do. She’s also rather eccentric, going with the flow and creating her own styles, and even her own dinners every so often. The two of them, thankfully, understand each other perfectly, and it’s the story of these two that carries our movie. That’s pretty much all there is to it.


Paterson Marvin image



PATERSON is a film unlike any other. It’s a quaint, quiet and uneventful movie that focuses on the little moments in life. It’s a film dedicated to the things we do in our downtime, the smaller moments. It revels in the art of walking one’s dog, going for a drink and fixing the letterbox that falls down day after day. There’s no big, catastrophic event that happens, or even any real conflict. The only conflict that occurs is between Paterson and his dog, but that’s merely played for laughs, and even then, barely in the movie. But this is far from a bad film. In fact, it’s a brilliant one.

Focusing on the little moments makes the whole experience feel rather profound. It’s in similar vein to that of BOYHOOD, but instead of being told over 12 years, it’s told over one week, focusing in on his relationship with his wife and his job as a bus driver. He spends a great deal of the film writing poetry, and his poems are quite beautiful. It’s poetry that ends up becoming a big part of the movie, even becoming noticeable in his day-to-day life. The whole thing comes together to form something that’s a little bit different, a little bit beautiful, and a little bit brilliant.


Paterson Laura (Golshifteh Farahani) image



Jim Jarmusch is a fascinating director, crafting such films as DEAD MAN, BROKEN FLOWERS and ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE. From what I’ve seen of his filmography, all of his movies seem to show a different side of cinema. They’re all out of the norm, so to speak, but they’ve all got a lot to say. They’re strange, unique and important movies dealing with several different topics, but all relating back to the human condition, and PATERSON represents all of that and more. This film is created to showcase our human side, and it’s almost impossible not to relate to at least one aspect of it.


To bring his glorious vision to life, he needs a cast capable of doing so, and like always, Jarmusch casts the best of the best. Adam Driver has been on a roll lately with such hits as MIDNIGHT SPECIAL, STAR WARS THE FORCE AWAKENS and the upcoming SILENCE, which I saw earlier this month and will have a review up for it in the not-so-distant future. PATERSON is the film that could earn Driver an Oscar nom. I don’t think he’ll win it, but he’s certainly got a chance at a nomination, as he’s excellent in this movie.

Driver is in nearly every scene, so it’s really up to him to hold this movie together. If he were bad, the movie wouldn’t be nearly as entertaining as the wonderful screenplay is. Thankfully, he’s great, and so is this movie. He has excellent chemistry with all of his co-stars, but in particular with Golshifteh Farahani, whom he shares the most screen time with. She isn’t quite as good as Driver, but Driver is a hard man to beat, and she gives it her all, creating an authentic and believable performance.


Paterson Laura (Golshifteh Farahani) image



PATERSON is an original, unique and profound little movie that doesn’t have a lot going on, but has an awful lot to say. It’s quaint, quiet and uneventful, but extremely beautiful in its simplicity. Plus, Adam Driver absolutely kills it. I’m not sure if it’ll make it into my top films of the year list over on but I certainly did love it.





When he’s not spending an embarrassing amount of hours browsing through Netflix, Jack Dignan dedicates his time to reviewing movies of all genres and languages, and has done so since 2012. He also maintains a website of his own – – and ever since their interview, he’s been best friends with Quentin Tarantino. Tarantino just doesn’t know it yet. 

** Images used are courtesy of various sources on Google or direct from the distributor or publisher Credit has been given to photographers where known – images will be removed on request.


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