I felt very fortunate to recently find myself with a free afternoon near an historic theater in Cambridge, MA that had a showing of Synecdoche, New York, directed by Charlie Kaufman, well known for his writing and production credits on films such as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Adaptation, and Being John Malkovich, among others, and starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, who needs no introduction as one of the great actors of our time. I had only heard of this âstrangeâ film through word of mouth and decided to do something I rarely ever do: I read a full review by Roger Ebert before I saw the film. Maybe this isnât alarming to some, to get an opinion or two before viewing a film, but I have always felt that seeing a movie and forming my own thoughts an important aspect to discovering what is and is not considered great to me. Now that Iâve admitted to hearing someone elseâs opinion of this film, Iâd like to say that I still donât really know what to say. On the one hand, you have a film that has a plot and is not too difficult to follow. However, as you are watching and sort of understanding what is happening, you realize that you donât quite get what is happening, and slowly you realize that you have no idea what is truly happening, even though you may think you think you know what may or may not be happening. Yes, I just wrote the above and I stand by it. Did I like this movie? Yes, I did. Can I explain why? Iâm not sure. I think I said I like it because it feels very much like a real life in torment, and I am drawn to films that really attack human emotion and those that try to show through film ideas and notions that are nearly impossible to portray. But again, with that said, Iâm not sure what to say about this âstrangeâ film. I could try to explain the basic plot: Hoffmanâs character has a crappy life and the movie takes us through his tormented mind as he lives life and uses his own career as a theatre director to attempt to make sense of his suffering , or to at least organize it into something manageable. However, I donât know if that is the correct interpretation. I almost decided not to write anything and just let this film live in my mind as I viewed it, as a piece of art that I am not quite sure I enjoyed, but I know I did not dislike. I donât mind âcrazyâ movies. They donât bother me like they do some, as long as I am willing to take the time to try and dissect what I am seeing and hearing, it canât all be bad. With this film I did feel like I was being asked to do a bit too much dissecting about the Â¾ mark of the run time, though, and that did make me somewhat angry. Having characters playing characters who are watching themselves in a play as characters of their real selves is ok, I suppose, but then to make timelines incomprehensible and characters coming and going without explanations, or at least logical explanations, got to be just a bit much.