Archive for June, 2010
This movie should have been here from the moment I saw it, but for some reason that I couldn’t express at the time, I left it off the list completely. I have now seen this movie over 5 times and for the first 4 viewings, it still teetered on the edge between being my all-time favorite and moving down completely in rank to the Nearly Perfect.
The reason is that there are two drifter characters in it that bothered me the first couple of times, and I think it was just their performances rather than the material that did it. I can now say that I have accepted them in some way and it no longer detracts from an otherwise very special movie. The movie hits so many emotional buttons for me, more with each viewing. The last time I watched it, the last 40 minutes was through the blur of tears. There is also a scene, that for any musician who appreciates the visual and audio synergy, will absolutely blow you away.
Sometimes I wish that I didn’t read the book before watching the movie. I know that everyone says that the book is usually better than the movie, but it doesn’t bother me when a movie can’t fit an entire book into a 2 hour movie as long as it honors the spirit of the book and attempts to do it proudly. In this case, I wonder whether it would have mattered.
When a movie cherry-picks the way this one did and removes most of the characters in favor of some odd romp through the desert, I begin to take offense at the fact that the producers have no respect for either the original work or the audience. What is even more hard to take is that when I enjoy previous works from the producers of the movie, Clooney in particular, I let my guard down. Sure, he was Batman in the worst of all Batman movies, but it wasn’t him calling the shots. Here he has no excuse. To me, he fell in love with a single character and that is what the story ultimately was written about.
If they honored the book, the audience would have been both amused and repulsed at the same time at the notion of how a simple and innocent idea can be so horribly perverted. Instead, we got on goofy quirk after another. I’d write more but suffice it to say that it is really a shame to let such good original journalism go to waste.