Saturday, May 12, 2007

Beautiful People in Film, a Novelty

I just finished watching the movie Closer, which was character-driven yet had characters that I found ultimately boring and disappointing when they weren't being immediately obnoxious, stupid, and shallow. I was surprised to read several reviews (after watching the movie) that suggest that the dialogue was intelligent and witty. Have we reached a point of such diminished expectations for movies that exchanges such as "You've ruined my life" / "You'll get over it" are considered conversational gems? It also featured a couple of the most eye-rolling "meet cutes" I have seen recently. (I learned this phrase from the at turns amusing and gagorific The Holiday. The scenes with Jude Law and Cameron Diaz become increasingly unwatchable due to way overload on giggly saccharine sweetness.) This is not to say I disliked the movie exactly, but I didn't like it - I guess I was influenced by the fundamental isolation (all the characters are emotionally distanced from anyone but themselves, and sometimes even then, despite whatever frenzied, ridiculous declarations of love are made to people they have hardly even spoken to) but not by the ongoing manipulation. I reached the end of the movie with a kind of "okay, who gives a rat's ass" attitude.

I remember in the advertising and discussion around the movie when it came out that much was made of the fact that the film was about the lives of four "beautiful people," which always struck me as idiotic. Because, yes, what we don't have enough of in Hollywood blockbusters is beautiful people. I hate how we are forced to watch so many movies with so many unattractive actors. Like, the aforementioned The Holiday. Jude Law, Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz - all beautiful people right? But then Jack Black makes the fourth. While surprisingly charming in the movie, certainly not beautiful. This movie was working at only 75% beauty in its main four characters, to say nothing of the old dude who probably wasn't even beautiful in his prime!

And OK, I know it's bitchy to say, but let's face facts: Julia Roberts is no longer looking all that beautiful. If her face gets any thinner, you could cut rope with it. She still has appeal, in a sort of big-eyed, elf-like way, but she's not the stunning beauty she once was. And the blonde hair really wasn't working for her at all.

1 comment:

mom said...

Dad and I watched "Munich" last night, which is such a serious and dramatic movie (with no comic relief) that you don't want to watch it when you need something to lift your spirits. A lame romantic comdedy can do that since some of the humor can be in how lame it it is. But all romantic comedies can't be "Kate and Leopold", which I really liked.