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The struggles in reporting the news are shown in such an interesting way
the 1996 movie, 'Up close and personal'. It also shows that a little bit
luck can help a person go a long way in an industry like that of TV
journalism. This movie's story, which has a strong and very emotional
romance within it, also has some surprising twists that I am sure people
will not expect once they have watched it.
Sally Atwater is fresh from a small-town trailer park when she arrives in Miami, overdressed and overeager to be the weather girl. He debut is disastrous but her boss, experienced newsman, Warren Justice, admires her spunk and takes her under his wing, making her an on air reporter. As Justice moulds Sally into one of the county's most sought after journalists, the pair fall in love, only to have their relationship threatened by the very success they have created.
Here is one of the great romance movies I have seen in a longtime. I love the way that the main stars first meet and how their relationship develops. By the time that Tally is a great journalist, what is more important than her career, is the man that she loves that being Warren Justice. The screenplay for this movie was beautifully written by John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion. I love how the two main stars are able to fall in love, but at the same time, able to do what they do as a career. Sure it might take a little while for the movie to show that this is important, but I feel that the time needed to be taken, so that both Tally and Warren fall deeply in love.
The director of 'Up close and personal' was Jon Avnet, who has been a part of some great movies such as that of 'Risky Business', 'When a man loves a woman', and the 'Mighty ducks' trilogy. In this movie, I love the way that Avnet shows Tally Atwater at the start, to be someone who is a struggler, ignored and made fun of. Then to make her character be so vital and important in the whole make-up of the film, was great. This I believe is the good work of Avnet and makes the movie all the more compelling. I also like the world that Avnet has created for the film, that of the pressurised, TV journalism environment.
The stars of the movie are two of Hollywood's better known actors in Robert Redford and Michelle Pfeiffer. The pair have a good chemistry in this movie, with the way that they fall in love very believable. I also like how Redford's character, Warren, refers to Tally at the start of the film, saying that 'she eats the camera'. This scene shows that Warren not only likes Tally as a journo, but as a woman as well. I also like the way that Pfeiffer appears in this film. She looks very much like a reporter does on the news and it is in her appearance that this needed to be so definite.
The supporting cast of 'Up close and personal' is a pretty good one. I like Marcia McGrath (Stockard Channing), who is the tough as nails anchor girl, who is pushed out of her position by the rising career of Tally Atwater. She treats Tally pretty bad in the film, if the truth be known. I also like Joanna Kennelly (Kate Nelligan), who we find out is one of Warren's former wives. She is one of the reasons why Warren has had a turbulent journalism career. Do not discount the little role taken on by Tally's cameraman Ned Jackson (Glenn Plumber). He is an incredibly brave cameraman, who admires Tally for the work that she does. Trust me I would not have liked doing the camera work that he was doing in the prison.
'Up close and personal' might not have the greatest of sound tracks, but it does have one song that I really like. That song is 'Because you loved me' sung by Celine Dion. It is a song which was used well in the film and its lyrics suit this movie beautifully. How great a song this was, made me want to watch the film all the more. By the way, there is one scene in the movie that shows Pfeiffer's character singing 'The impossible dream' at an empty football stadium in front of Warren. All I will say about this is that Pfeiffer should stick to the acting game, because she does not sing that well.
This movie, is such 'a good drama love story', because it shows how tough the 'TV journalism' area can be, and does not shrug away from showing how difficult and dangerous such a career can be (the prison scene is wonderfully shot and one of the great parts of the film). I also like how this movie concludes, and I am not afraid to admit that it has gotten me upset both times I have watched it. You will notice, that I say that Sally Atwater's name is actually 'Tally'. I will not reveal how this change happens, just to say that I like it. I believe it was placed in the story for a bit of fun. But I am not so sure I would like my name changed for my chosen career. Would you?
CMRS gives 'Up close and personal': 4 (Very Good Film)
"Up Close and Personal" proves again that charismatic stars and good production values can overcome a weak story. This story of two television journalists (Redford and Pfeiffer) has few surprises, no fresh insights about the news business, and its big moments are both predictable and overblown. Nevertheless, Redford and Pfeiffer provide enough star power to make for a reasonably entertaining couple of hours. There is one particularly funny line, though. When the Pfeiffer character says of a co-worker, "He's so stupid!" her boyfriend, the Redford character, with a quizzical expression on his face, says, "He's an anchorman." 6 out of 10, marginally recommended.
While this is definitely a "women's movie," a man can enjoy this, too.
I did, but not enough to see it twice or to purchase it. Supposedly,
it's the story of former television news reporters Jessica Savitch and
Robert Redford is good at playing the veteran newsman teaching Michelle Peiffer (Savitch) the business. He does more than that, of course, being her lover and then her husband. With Redford, you know you are going to get a dose of Liberal politics in the mix and in here, it's let's-feel-sorry-for-the-prison inmates. The preaching is "they are in jail to be rehabilitated." Well, that sounds nice but whatever happened to jail as a form of punishment for someone committing a crime against someone else? Liberals - like Redford, who is never shy about giving us his views in movies like this - sometimes seem to have more compassion for thugs than they do victims of crime! He goes so far in here as to preach that if you don't treat prisoners with kid gloves you deserve to have a riot on your hands.
Outside of all that heavy-handedness, you get a nice romance with solid acting all around, not only from the two leads but the supporting case with people like Stockarrd Channnng, Joe Mantegna, Kate Nelligan, Glen Plummer and James Rebhorn.
It's one the most sensible movie I have ever seen and I've seen a lot.
Great...no.... excellent performance of Robert Redford and Michelle
Pfeiffer creates a special romantic atmosphere. It's absoletely one of
the most outstanding movie duet in the whole history of cinematografe.
And some scenes make you heart stop for a moment, like in the news room
during the editing or when she came to say him that she is going to
I recommend it to everyone who crazy about romantic movies. And be ready to feel all spectrum of feelings with positive emotions.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
For the most part, I really liked this film (more on that later), so I
was surprised to see it get such low ratings. In reading up on the
film, I learned it was supposed to be based on the life of Jessica
Savitch, a newscaster I remember quite well, although I forgot how she
died. I have a feeling the producers/director were in a damned if we
do, and damned if we don't situation here. They were inspired by
Savitch's life story, but wanted to make a love story, instead. If they
just told the love story, and weren't open about the Savitch angle,
they'd be criticized. If they made it clear the story came from the
Savitch bio, but didn't make it a documentary/fiction story, they'd be
criticized as well. They should have just shut up about where the
inspiration for the story came from.
SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER
Now, as to saying that I really liked this film, there is a huge "except" here. I see no reason in a romantic story like this to kill of one of the two major characters. Yes, I (and apparently most people) wanted a happy ending. I was disappointed to see Redford killed at the end...and I see no good reason that was the way it ended. The film just edged down a notch for me. But, perhaps the problem with the film is that when you begin watching it you think it's one thing -- a romance story with some humor...but then it turns deadly serious.
Another thing that would have helped would have been some timelines, particularly in Tally's time in Miami. It was difficult to get a sense of how long it took her to go from desk work, to weather, to reporter, etc.
The acting here is superb. Redford, who was pretty much always at the top of his game, was here, also. Michelle Pfeiffer is excellent, as well. It's too bad she's not been in such wonderful roles in recent years. This is very much Redford's and Pfeiffer's film. Sure there are supporting actors, but none that have memorable roles, although their performances are all very good.
It seems as if this film suffered from a bit of an identity confusion. But I still liked it...very much...except for the ending.
I love Michelle Pfeiffer. Robert Redford is a superstar. Which is why I
shelled out for a cinema ticket in 1996 while I was working in
The first clue should have been the turnout. There were 5 other people in the theatre. 2 left about halfway through.
The recent movie that jogged my mind about Up Close and Personal was "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World". Steve Carell and Keira Knightly...how could you go wrong? At the end of that movie, and after I'd said "is that it?" I remembered 1996.
2 big stars of the moment, an interesting premise, but a total turkey. What the 2 movies had in common was a couple of actors walking through their lines with as much feeling and believability as the bored woman who sold me the tickets at the counter.
Absolutely no chemistry, no connection with the audience; you could almost hear Pfeiffer and Redford thinking 'is this over yet?' Contrast this with Pfeiffer's other 1996 effort One Fine Day, and you see that her heart is still in it. Whereas Redford's efforts since this stinker have been mediocre at best.
Up Close & Personal was so bad that it took nearly 17 years for Carell's non-effort to knock it off my Worst Movie mantle.
I don't know how anyone could watch this movie and not love it. The line up of actors in the move are amazing and maybe that's why some people expected a different kind of movie. The movie moves a long perfectly, telling the story in a great time line. It doesn't drag and there is not one part of the story that doesn't fit. It's as if a friend is telling you the main highlights of a friends' love life. I gave it a ten - Redford an Pfieffer make a great, believable couple and you can tell they put their heart into this movie. They both play people who are intelligent and aren't afraid to fight for what they believe it, something we all strive for. Get a tissue, you'll need it.
You know how there are some movies which you know you're not supposed to like but end up liking anyway? That perfectly describes this movie. This umpteenth re-telling of A STAR IS BORN is sappy, unbelievable(while previous "Norman Maine" characters are down because of alcohol, Redford's character is down because of his "integrity." Yeah, okay), and contains an unbearable Celine Dion(of course, in my opinion, unbearable and Celine Dion is redundant, but that's my opinion). But darn it if the romantic chemistry between Redford and Pfeiffer doesn't make this worth watching. And say what you want about director Jon Avnet(and I'm not a fan of his), he knows how to direct actors. Joe Mantegna, Stockard Channing, and Kate Nelligan are all excellent here. You may not like yourself for liking it, but there you go.
There is an advantage when the fare on television is so bland that the
box of purchased DVDs comes out of the closet: some of those oldies are
so good that they make the current crop of contemporary comedy/drama
love stories inept. Such is the case in viewing the very popular 1996
film UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL, a film whose nidus is Alanna Nash's exposé
book 'Golden Girl: The Story of Jessica Savitch' adapted and remolded
for the screen by no less than Joan Didion and John Gregroy Dunne,
under the careful and tidy direction of Jon Avnet, and starring two of
screen's most popular talents Robert Redford and Michelle Pfeiffer.
The film suggests the Jessica Savitch story, the newswoman who, in the 1970's, became the "First Woman Anchor". Sally/Tally Atwater (Michelle Pfeiffer) is from the other side of the tracks in Reno who is obsessed with becoming a news star. She fakes her résumé, barges into an important television studio run by the indomitable Warren Justice, fakes is and fails as a weather forecaster, yet is so refreshingly purposeful that she is taken under the wing of Warren in a Miami newsroom, given not only a makeover in appearance, but also the chance to make a difference in a news story involving the sad plight of Cuban exiles swimming to freedom in Florida, and becomes a news star on TV. There is a chemistry between the two and despite Warren's tendency to marry and divorce frequently the two fall in love. Yet despite her love for Warren, she takes the big chance and moves on to Philadelphia, where he follows to rescue her faltering career at the cost of his own - as she rises he falls. It is a love story and more - a Pygmalion reshaping of a true tale.
Both Redford and Pfeiffer look and act great and they are surrounded by a fine cast of extras - Stockard Channing, Kate Nelligan, Joe Mantegna, etc. Nice to remember when love stories were not just about potty mouth derring-do, but instead were well written and well crafted little films.
It has been a long time since a film has made me cry. I can't remember
crying like this since Beaches and Steel Magnolias years ago. To be
honest the movie seemed a little boring and overacted to start with -
Pfeiffer was very much as she had been in Dangerous Minds,
controversial and unique (not that that is a bad thing, just
repetitive). However, once you move past the 'a star is born' bit, the
developing relationship between Warren Justice (Redford) and Tally
Attwater is a beautiful and believable one. It is also interesting to
get a look at how the TV news may operate behind-the-scenes.
Unlike so many star couplets today, Redford and Pfeiffer have true on-screen chemistry and are at their best in this film.
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