Passion. Possession. Infatuation. Betrayal. These are the hallmarks of any unhealthy and dramatic relationship. And despite the glitz and glam of Steven Soderbergh‘s Behind the Candelabra, none of these emotions feels fresh or surprising despite the talent of the lead actors and the colorful figure of Liberace. The strange relationship between Liberace (Michael Douglas) and Scott Thorson (Matt Damon) is rendered inert by a dramatic trajectory that’s been laid out within the first ten minutes. The love affair isn’t doomed; it’s predictable. At best, Behind the Candelabra makes out love to be as shiny, entrancing, and as fake as Liberace’s public persona.