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Cameron Crowe is one of those directors that thrive on making the
little moments in movies the most memorable ones you'll ever see in
your life. In 'Almost Famous,' it was when everyone on the Stillwater
tour bus was singing along to "Tiny Dancer." In 'Say Anything...' it
was when Lloyd was driving around and proclaimed how his heart was
exchanged for Diane's pen. Crowe also creates many memorable little
moments in 'Singles,' which may not be the most famous movie he's made
but it's one of the best.
Even though 'Singles' is about twenty-somethings in Seattle, everything rang true to me as I am now, a teenager. The film is honest and real in how couples become couples and how relationships can fall apart. 'Singles' isn't at all mean-spirited or depressing in its portrayal of relationships or the dating game, so it might turn some people off who want to see the extremely ugly confrontations (a la 'Closer'). But the moments in 'Singles' that make it worth watching are when Linda (Kyra Sedgewick) gets to know Steve (Campbell Scott) while going through his record collection in his apartment. Or when Janet (Bridget Fonda) sneezes and gets a "bless you" from someone she (and the audience) would least expect.
Everything about 'Singles' is great. The cast, the music and the truth behind the movie will bring a smile to your face.
SINGLES is a charming, romantic movie and one of Cameron Crowe's best.
An oft-heard criticism of this film is that it's not an authentic portrayal of the Gen-X culture of the early 90's, but I've yet to see that done well in any film.
More importantly, the film never claims to be a Gen-X film. It's set in Seattle during the height of Seattle Sound but the cast is made up of driven professionals and slackers alike. It's more of a cross-section of 20-somethings, not a focus on Gen-X or Grunge. The characters, settings and themes are all to a certain degree idealized, which is a staple of Crowe's style.
Where this film's charm really lies is in capturing the spirit of the early-90's and the anti-classist sentiment embraced by teens and young professionals in opposition to the "status is everything" 1980s. It's nice to remember a time when being socially and environmentally conscious was actually fashionable for a time.
Sadly we all got sucked into the dot-com thing and realized we can be just as bad as our parents.
Love. Sex. Friendship. Companionship. These are the themes obviously
explored in Cameron Crowe's early movie Singles, which revolve around
the love lives of singles (naturally) living in a common apartment. We
follow each of the protagonist Steve (Campbell Scott), Janet (Bridget
Fonda), Cliff (Matt Dillon) and Linda (Kyra Sedgwick) through their ups
and downs in dealing with the weird little emotion called Love.
Well, not quite. As we know early in the film, each have problems and their own peculiar viewpoints on the dating scene. We see Linda meeting and breaking up with a Spanish student she was so into, after seeing through his lies and sweet talk. It hurts, and she doesn't want to be hurt again. Steve too have had a bad experience, and (I can identify with this) swears off relationships for the next few years, deciding instead to focus on career. As Fate would have had it, these two will meet at the unlikeliest places and get into a relationship.
Cliff, an aspiring rocker, seemed to have taken his girlfriend Janet, for granted. And I think this is something that most people can identify with. When efforts go unappreciated, or when things go mundane, the question is, do you want to bail out? And when you do, what next? Would you give the ex another chance? If you do, how would you approach it? It's fun watching a movie that was made 13 years ago, and you wonder about how the initiating and sustaining of a relationship back then happened without technology which we are so used to these days. Back then, a mobile phone was a cordless one, and there is no such thing as an instant message, but an answering machine. Where Speed Dating was unheard of, but Video Dating was the rage (check out the funny Tim Burton cameo).
You wonder too about the career of the leads. Campbell Scott was noticed by many after his pairing with Julia Roberts in the movie Dying Young, but after this, seemed to have vanished into obscurity. And so has Kyra Sedgwick. Only Matt Dillon and Bridget Fonda are still around, somewhere.
Oh, the music. Peppered throughout the movie is the wonderful musical tracks that always seem to punctuate a particular moment succinctly. I like Tarantino and Crowe movies because music plays an integral part of the entire experience, and Singles too had excellent ballads blended with grunge rock, say, Pearl Jam (before they made it huge), which also made an appearance.
It's a beautiful, quirky little movie with excellent identifiable dialogue, music, humour, and a younger cast of stars whom we know today, thrown into situations that everyone in love would have experienced.
Having lived in Seattle during the years of my life most of the
characters are in this movie, I was able to relate to this movie.
Anyone who has lived in an apartment complex where people have dated
and known a bit too much about each other can appreciate this film. The
cameo appearances of members of pearl jam and xavier mcdaniel were a
The viewer is left with what I could call a warm feeling much like watching the sun set on a day towards the end of summer. Contemplation of all the good and bad that may have occurred in the last few months..
Maybe that's a bit too abstract, but if this movie gets you there then fine.
And yes, the sun does shine sometimes in Seattle!
What I liked most about Singles was that many of the characters you could identify with. Its not often in a film where you can look at characters and think - I know someone like that. Its actually very accurate in the way it depicts the attitudes of twenty somethings who have been through a series of less than successful relationships. There are some great, and very funny scenes in this film, and the actors all put in great performances. Setting it in Seattle- the home of the Grunge band was a fantastic idea as well.
1st watched 11/14/2004 - 7 out of 10(Dir-Cameron Crowe): Cute, funny
and sincere attempt to chronicle a singles life in the 90's in Seattle.
What I liked about this movie is that all the single people know that
they need "someone", which is the constant struggle that goes on in
their lives, but finding that "someone" isn't as easy as we think it
would be. This movie does a good job of showing this. It is
well-written, funny, played out well by the stars and has a nice
soundtrack to fill in the voids.
It's about "people" and it has a style like a chronicled life where the characters every once in a while talk to the camera as if their lives are being documented. Excellent effort by Crowe and his crew to bring this segment of society into view for all of us.
Singles follows the dating lives of a bunch of apartment-block residents;
set in grunge era Seattle- but you already knew that. This is not a
film but it exudes a genuine warmth and will surely give you those feel
What I liked most about the film was the way this eclectic mix of love stories came together so well. All the characters are extremely likeable (Campbell Scott's especially) and you get emotionally invested in them very soon.
This is the kind of film you can just kick back with on a rainy Saturday afternoon- you don't need to exert much mental energy to follow the rambling plot; just prepare to watch representations of very real relationships that you probably will be able to relate to on some level.
Singles is a great film. I loved every minute of this film. Cameron Crowe has directed two films I consider essential viewing. Say Anything was the first and Singles is the second. The cast seemed like real people to me, and I loved all the performances. This film dealt with relationships in the 90's in a very realistic, funny and sometimes sad way. The soundtrack to this film is amazing. Great selection of tunes. This film has many moments you'll be quoting from for quite a long time. Great film.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Cameron Crowe delivers a charming little piece of romantic comedy with
"Singles." Set amidst the backdrop of early '90s Seattle, the film
itself often takes a backseat to its excellent soundtrack including
some of grunge rock's best. However, Crowe's signature charm
highlighting the little things of personal relationships amid big
cities and big music earns this one a place alongside gems like "Say
Anything" and "Almost Famous."
The film's title speaks over a range of topics within the film. The core characters find themselves single, living in single apartments, or even cutting singles in bands. Yet single relationship status above all helps to form the meat of the film, carrying us through the parallel paths of friends bound together by their apartments and the music they enjoy. The wrestling match between commitment and escape, love and friendship underpins every moment of every conversation.
Music lover Crowe's early days as a journalist for Rolling Stone magazine have rubbed off in many memorable ways over the span of his career. Often the sounds of his movies speak more potently than the actors, or augment their performance (we all remember John Cusack's Peter Gabriel moment in "Say Anything"). Peppered throughout "Singles" are fantastic songs chronicling the swell of Seattle grunge and alternative rock, including club performances by Alice in Chains and Soundgarden. Three members of Pearl Jam make delicious cameos as Matt Dillon's band mates, and Chris Cornell of Soundgarden even makes an appearance. Perhaps the best scene in the film occurs when Campbell Scott and Kyra Sedgwick sit silently over the pieces of a broken plate, both utterly entranced with "May this Be Love" by Jimi Hendrix.
Admittedly the film has its flaws, owing mostly to the clunky nature of incorporating several different parallel plot lines into a film of this length. Some characters are squeezed in with marginal and ultimately forgettable results. However, Crowe's ability to forge the very fabric of what people love about each other and their lives keeps "Singles" afloat above other romantic comedies. Simply put, he nudges our own memory bank with a combination of music and storytelling that allows us to connect with his characters.
This movie has almost convinced me that I am way too closed minded
about mainstream movies.
I saw this mainly because of its 'grunge' soundtrack, composed by the brilliant Paul Westerberg.
What I saw was not a 'grunge' subculture movie, but rather a conventional romantic comedy, probably quite similar to many Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts movies, but I loved it! Sometimes you need a bit of sugar in a movie, in the same way you need to escape, or have your mind expanded.
I really enjoyed this movie, and I find it hard to believe that anyone can not find something to like about it. One of my favourites of all time!
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