Requiem for a Dream (2000)
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Screenwriters: Darren Aronosfky, Hubert Selby, Jr.
Stars: Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly, Ellen Burstyn, Marlon Wayans
It's not a slight to label Requiem for a Dream one of the most depressing movies ever made—a film about the destruction of four addicts isn't supposed to be uplifting. At every turn, director Darren Aronofsky puts the film's downbeat tone on front street, no more so than during Requiem's dizzying and relentless final act. With an alarming franticness, Aronofsky employs all kinds of camera tricks to disorient the viewer beyond belief, showing all four characters' ends in one roiling boil of images.
After its release, the film became the drug film par excellence, unseating Trainspotting in dorm rooms everywhere. It's also one of the most successful film adaptations of a novel ever. Of course, it must've helped that novelist Hubert Selby, Jr. closely collaborated with Aronofsky during the process. —MB