The Air I BreatheCast: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Kevin Bacon, Forest Whitaker, Andy Garcia
Forever linked together by ruthless crime boss Fingers (Andy Garcia) and a series of unpredictable twists of fate, the characters of The Air I Breathe weave together in an existential study in luck, both good and bad.
Director Jieho Lee divides this vast tale into four distinct threads: a timid businessman (Forest Whitaker) bets his life on a horse race after he discovers the fix is in; a fragile pop star (Sarah Michelle Gellar) finds her management contract unexpectedly in jeopardy; a gangster (Brendan Fraser) who sees the future must decide whether to follow his visions; and an doctor (Kevin Bacon) tries to save the love of his life from a deadly injury.
As the world keeps spinning and these individual tales give way to hidden connections and underlying similarities, The Air I Breathe uses this unlikely mix of drama and characters to dramatize an ancient Chinese proverb that evokes life’s four emotional cornerstones: happiness, pleasure, sorrow and love. It’s when these four overlapping stories come to a head, however, and these emotions unexpectedly surface, collide and explode, that the movie suggests our destiny whether it is steeped in sweet sorrow or tragic happiness may ultimately be something we bring on ourselves. Lee fluidly maneuvers between the storylines, letting the pieces fall together organically until the final climax. The phenomenal ensemble cast, including Julie Delpy and Emile Hirsch, moves through all the twists and turns with ease as the cleverly constructed vignettes unite in an emotionally resonant whole.