Director effects finale fix
Side Effects is indeed Steven Soderbergh’s final film, as he says it will be, then intriguingly, it feels like he’s coming full circle to the film that put him on the map – the trailblazing, 1989 indie Sex, Lies and Videotape. Both are lurid genre exercises, focusing on the intertwined lives of four central figures. Both are about danger, secrets and manipulation, filled with characters who aren’t what they initially seem, all of which Soderbergh depicts with his typically cool detachment.
Twists and double-crosses occur and schemes are revealed as layer upon layer of Scott Z. Burns’ clever script are peeled away. It’s difficult to discuss Side Effects, starring Channing Tatum, Jude Law and a standout Rooney Mara (pictured), without giving too much away. Soderbergh approaches the dramatic events with the same chilly tone that has marked so much of his work. Just as matter-of-fact is the way the characters rattle off the names of the prescription drugs they’re on and discuss which ones work better than others, from Wellbutrin to Zoloft to the fictitious Ablixa. In an accurate reflection of our impatient times, everyone in Side Effects wants the quick fix: for their finances, careers, reputations, sex lives and, most fundamentally, their moods.