Alexander Payne brilliantly returns to the big screen with a masterpiece-in-miniature. With DOWNSIZING, the director of NEBRASKA and THE DESCENDANTS once again elevates the game with a trademark razor-sharp satire that squarely positions him as one of the finest filmmakers working today.
Set in a near-future where miniaturization has become a solution to overpopulation and extinction of resources, doughy middle-aged Paul (Matt Damon) and his doting wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig) make the big leap to go small and downsize... in dramatic fashion. Desperate to shake the shackles of his mundane existence, Paul pursues the process of "cellular miniaturization" in an attempt to grasp the better life that's long looked to be out of his reach. As always with Payne, things don’t always go to plan as he expertly blends social satire with slivers of science fiction and a perfectly orchestrated crew of performers.
And what a cast he’s assembled. Matt Damon eschews his action hero past and shows off his supreme versatility and Kristen Wiig shines in a big screen role that finally expresses her vast range and depth. Plus, DOWNSIZING features exemplary performances from an all-star array of talent, including Laura Dern, Christoph Waltz, and an absolutely stand-out showing from Hong Chau.
Payne has long shown his affection for the mediocrity of middle-aged masculinity. From ELECTION to SIDEWAYS to ABOUT SCHMIDT, he's reveled in the American everyman to glorious effect, and with DOWNSIZING he's reached new heights. Only in his hands could going small be so big.