The Ugly Manipulations of Collateral Beauty

Collateral Beauty is a movie that insists grief can be beautiful. In the service of this extraordinarily bland, empty message, it takes the subject most likely to provoke an emotional response—the death of a child—and treats it cheaply, employing pseudobabble, chicken-soup-for-the-soul platitudes, and naked manipulation to tug at its audience’s heartstrings. It’s transparently cynical, with no apparent endgame in mind other than simple profit.

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