The biggest problem with the film is that it goes into too much detail about the characters we do not care about and not enough in the characters we do.
From the highly praised director Fernando Meirelles (City of God) comes 360, a film that shows how decisions in life connect a group of strangers to each other. The film is about forks in the road and how your decision changes not only your path but others as well. In the end the film comes full circle, which is how the film gets its title 360.
360 is set in just about as many places as the amount of characters it contains. The common theme amongst the characters is romantic dilemmas that through one way or another connect the characters together. The first example of this is when a young Slovakian woman begins her work as a prostitute meets her first client Michael (Jude Law) who is cheating on his wife Rose (Rachel Weisz).
However, the best showing of the intersecting storyline is at the Denver airport. We see Laura (Maria Flor) who just broke up with her boyfriend who was cheating on her with Rose sit next to John (Anthony Hopkins) on the airplane. The two get to know each other and plan to meet for some drinks at restaurant in the airport once they find out that all flights have been cancelled due to weather. Waiting for John to get the hotel vouchers, Laura ends up meeting a man named Tyler (Ben Foster).
Tyler is a sex offender who recently had been released from six years in prison. He does not feel he is fit to be on the outside but his counselor believes he has rehabilitated enough to make it. Tyler legitimately wants to do the right thing. He makes a call to his counselor once he gets off the plane saying that he is still worried that his urges may be triggered. But that was before he met Laura, who ends up getting him to drink.
After Tyler’s counselor makes a call to the airport security to inform them of the public danger he imposes, an announcement is made over the airport speakers asking Tyler to report to the front desk. This announcement is heard right as John makes it back to the restaurant where he planned to meet Laura. But because he ended up taking too long Laura already met someone. Laura just wants attention after getting cheated on by her boyfriend but little does she know, the man she decides to flirt with is a sex offender.
I say the airport is the best example of the patchwork storyline because it shows these characters intersect in a small quarters of the airport. Not only that but it also has the most interesting set of characters. The reason why they may be the most interesting set is because we are given backgrounds on each of the three characters, which is something the film did not seem to always do.
From a technical stand point, the film is wonderfully done. The camera work is undeniably great. Shots that can fail if not done properly such as split screen shots or reflections of characters in mirrors were done wonderfully here. Sometimes Fernando Meirelles even combined split screen and mirror shots together.
In fact, there were many scenes where we see the character only from a mirror. Perhaps the meaning behind showing so many mirror shots was to show the duality of the character. The reflections physically show that there are two sides of each character. Much like a fork in the road, there are two separate choices.
In addition to the great composition of camera shots was superb film editing and acting. The editing work was often evident from the liberal use of blending transitions from scene to scene. And the ensemble cast was in top form thanks in part to; Jude Law, Ben Foster, Rachel Weisz, and Anthony Hopkins.
Even though the structure of the story has been done before (and done better such as in Magnolia), slowly revealing how strangers connect to one another, 360 was still enjoyable. The biggest problem with the film is that it goes into too much detail about the characters we do not care about and not enough in the characters we do. Which means at times you may find yourself looking at your watch and other times wishing the film showed more. 360 could not find the right balance between too much detail and not enough detail.