Wednesday, April 21, 2010

STILL looking for a good movie ...

When Robert and the girls went out of town a couple weeks ago (which will hopefully be the subject of a future post), I asked on-line about a fun movie to watch alone after I put Benjamin to bed. My only stipulation was that it not be too heavy or deep. In other words, I wasn't in the mood for Schindler's List.

It took me a while to get the movies from the library and finally get around to watching them all, and I am sorry to say that I didn't really like any of the three I got:

Under the Tuscan Sun was the first one I saw, and the only one I actually watched while everybody was away. I considered turning it off halfway through because it dawned on me that I was bored and didn't care about this woman and her house. I stuck it out, though. Eh.

In my usual style, I got on-line and read reviews after I watched it (in a way, I enjoy that more than watching the movie itself; kinda like a virtual film discussion).

I liked the movie even less when I realized the changes they made to the original book. Apparently the book was about a woman fixing up a home with her husband or boyfriend or something. The movie was about her feeling distraught and victimized when her husband left her for someone else, and her fixing up the house on her own, and it added a fictitious pregnant lesbian character who, like the main character, suddenly shows up in Tuscany to live indefinitely, with never any talk of a job or a Visa.

I was particularly looking forward to seeing Julie and Julia.

Until I popped it in and realized it was a Nora Ephron film.

Strange, since one of my very favorite movies ever, When Harry Met Sally, was a Nora Ephron film. But I have not liked anything else she has done, and yes, that includes Sleepless in Seattle.

I did like this one slightly better than Under the Tuscan Sun. I could relate to the idea of cooking being a "challenge," and I liked Meryl Streep's portrayal of Julia Child. But ... well, the story just seemed to go nowhere. It felt like it was a movie that was supposed to be deep or thought-provoking or inspiring, but most certainly was not any of those things. And how dumb was it to throw in at the end of the movie, "Julia Child hated her!" without in any way exploring or explaining why?

My final movie was last night -- The Devil Wears Prada. I didn't know much about it, but someone recommended it, and I expected and hoped it was be a scathing and clever satire -- or at least witty.


Again, Meryl Streep was the best thing about this movie. (And it truly is pure coincidence that two of the movies I got had both Meryl Streep and Stanley Tucci in them.)

But again, there wasn't much of a story. Rather then being clever or biting, it was very lightweight. Again, I was bored, especially by any scenes involving the boyfriend or the other guy she was with for a while. (Notice I don't remember the names of either of them.)


Am I harder to please than most people? All of the movies were recommended to me. Yes, I said I didn't want anything heavy. But does "light" have to mean boring and pointless?

Well, at least I enjoyed reading all the reviews when I was done ...


Anonymous said...

I loved Julie and Julia because both of the husbands in the movie were totally supportive of their wives. That is unusual in ANY movie nowadays. And the Devil Wears Prada I liked because Anne Hathaway was strong through a tough work environment that really isn't too far off from many bosses today.

Rebecca said...

I haven't seen the first or last of these, but have seen Julie and Julia twice. I loved all the parts involving Julia-- loved them, especially her relationship with her husband. But I really didn't much enjoy the petulant Julie and her whining self-absorption. One thing about her does stick with me, though, and it comes to mind whenever I think about writing in my blog (which I now almost never do): "That's what a blog's about. It's 'me, me, me' day after day." Or something to that effect. At any rate, it makes me NOT want to write in my blog!! :(

Anonymous said...

Right on Rebecca!

Anonymous said...

Uhm... I love Under the Tuscan Sun. I even bought and read the book!