The reviews are in and by most accounts, Robert Pattinson acquits himself nicely in the Twilight heartthrob's most critically lauded performance to date starring in David Cronenberg's Cosmopolis, which premiered at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival Friday night.
The big question: will Twi-hards will embrace the R-rated romp or at least Pattinson's naked torso in it?
In the drama based on Don DeLillo's novel of the same name, the 25-year-old Pattz plays Eric Packer, a 28-year-old billionaire financial wiz who embarks on an odyssey across Manhattan to get a haircut only to wind up involved in one surreal adventure and chance encounter after another—from seeing his wife in a taxi and snagging a part as an extra in a movie to being stalked by two men and getting caught up in a riot.
So what did the critics think? Here's a quick roundup of Cosmopolis' early reviews, which are decidedly mixed.
• "It's both an exceptional adaptation and a remarkable work unto itself," writes Indiewire, calling Cronenberg's first effort as both the film's director and sole writer a "triumph."
• "After Water for Elephants it remains to be seen whether Pattinson's teen following really is willing to follow him anywhere. But Cosmopolis does prove that he has the chops, and he parlays his cult persona beautifully into the spoiled, demanding Packer," raves Empire Online. "Lean and spiky—with his clean white shirt he resembles a groomed Sid Vicious—Pattinson nails a difficult part almost perfectly."
• "[Cronenberg] has an ideal collaborator in Pattinson, whose callow yet charismatic features take on a seductively reptilian quality here. It's the actor's strongest screen performance and certainly his most substantial," offers Variety.
• On the other hand, The Hollywood Reporter was less than charitable, labeling Cosmopolis "lifeless" and "lacking a palpable subversive pulse."
"[Eric] is utterly humorless and without detectable compassion or accessible humanity, which makes him less than companionable as a character…Itis a tough character that perhaps a young Jeremy Irons could have made riveting, but Pattinson is too bland and monotonous to hold the interest," opines the trade.
• And while lavishing praise on Pattinson, the Huffington Post panned Cronenberg's overall execution, giving the flick a C+.
"The film is anchored by a solid, ennui-filled performance by Robert Pattinson, shedding his Twilight skin for something more substantive and reminiscent of Christian Bale in American Psycho," said the site. "[However,] despite the interesting concepts, there is no escaping the lack of cinematic energy that keeps Cosmopolis from feeling like anything more than a perfunctory adaptation."
Taking all the accolades in stride, R.Pattz was quick to credit the meticulousness of his director for the results on screen.
"Generally speaking, filmmakers ask us nonstop questions and tire themselves out. David listens to us. He notices everything. You have to be very careful when you're filming with him!" Pattinson told reporters at today's press conference.
Answer: About even.
The latter film, which premiered at the Palais earlier in the week, earned similarly divided reactions from critics. Variety, for instance, hailed K.Stew's turn as Marylou as "warm and emotionally accessible," while Film School Rejects bashed it as a return to "her ice-cold angsty Bella shtick."
Guess you can't please everybody.
In any case, Cosmopolis is set to roll out in theaters internationally this month, though surprisingly it still does not yet have a U.S. release date.