Reviews written by registered user
|9 reviews in total|
People who like classical music or Mozart in particular will love this
movie. Assuming, of course, they can get past some historical
inaccuracies, weird giggles or any other slight on their revered
But what about the vast majority of people, who don't listen to classical music? Will this movie have any hold on them? Can someone who's been shaking their booty to MTV be thrown in classical waters and be expected to learn how to swim? If it's at all possible, this movie would be the one to do it. It's about jealousy, backstabbing, mealy-mouthing, blaspheming and stolen ideas. Who can't relate to that. Who hasn't had at least one of the above directed at them?
People who swear they wouldn't sit for any classical music, do it all the time when they get moved by a "classical" score in a movie that stealthily conveys all the emotion of the story.
Amadeus spotlights the creation of and appreciation of gorgeous music as seen through the jealous eyes of a competitor who knows in his heart he could never equal it.
If you're at that stage where you're yearning for something more than the beat, the riff, the homey twang, go for a little music appreciation that will knock your socks off. One of the best films I've ever seen.
I was totally and completely charmed by this movie. So much so that my next vacation had to be in the Dordogne region of France where I could visit the very castle in this fairy tale. I play the DVD often. I listen to the CD of the beautiful music George Fenton composed for this movie. Andy Tennant directed with just the right proportion of reality (beautiful cinematography, costumes, period backgrounds) and fantasy (slightly over the top acting and hauntingly beautiful music) to create the ultimate Cinderella story. Drew Barrymore is as charmingly beautiful as she was in The Wedding Singer. Angelica Huston's nasty character is a pleasure to watch. And how about that guttural, mealy mouth with rotting teeth - Pierre La Pieu! If this is a chick flick then I'm a weird looking hairy armed "chick" because I love this movie.
I must have been beamed up to a flying saucer at the exact period when I was watching this movie because it feels now that I'm back on earth among the human race again, that I have a totally different view of this film than everyone else. I hated it. It must be me, after reading so many positive reviews praising this film and how it has had a profound effect on them, I feel I must see this movie again for a re-appraisal. What I do remember, before being abducted, was that Fight Club started out so powerfully, I was amazed at the writing. It came out swinging. You knew this wasn't going to be a run-of-the-mill script. Then the story settled into a long drawn out fight after fight sequence that completely turned me off. Not because of the violence. Hey, I'm a Rambo film kinda guy, but just the sheer stupidity of it all. I'm now a bit confused. So many others saw something special in all this that I'm not ready to rate this movie until I force myself to sit through another viewing.
A director is suppose to get better with every movie, not worse. So how did Stephan Sommers go from the wonderful adventure/horror movie "The Mummy" to the terrible "The Mummy Returns" to the unwatchable "Van Helsing?" I have a theory: Everything was in perfect balance in the first half of "The Mummy". Branden Fraser, was the perfect adventurer, Rachel Weisz was the perfect bookish librarian who blossoms into an alluring dessert flower with just one costume change. (I thought veils were suppose to cover up beauty not enhance it). Casting in general was perfect. Take Oded Fehr, the chief guardian of the place with his intense looks and great baritone voice. You just knew women were going to pick up on his charisma. Best of all, a great feeling for the creepiness that was ancient Egypt. Last but not least, the best musical score from Jerry Goldsmith that makes everything jell. Then the movie took a wrong turn. It became more special effects and less great adventure storytelling. This was not a fatal mistake because of the great forward momentum of the story. Yet some of the creepiness was evaporating as "Pirates of the Caribbean" type skeletons were taking over the story. Still, everything was so good, all was forgiven. What the director should have learned from that movie was that too many special effects and too little plot and character development were the wrong formula. So what do we get in "The Mummy Returns", 70% special effects to a weak story. Then in Van Helsing, its 90% special effect and no story anyone would care to follow. If he can make a great fun film like the Mummy, he has the talent to redeem himself.
This movie is like modern art. It doesn't consider itself successful unless it offends someone. What's the point of setting out to do a hilariously funny, crude movie if you're going to pull your punches. There will be plenty of outraged people who will miss the point maybe the same ones who rant about how some completely original modern art piece "is pure garbage!" All I know is that when I saw this movie in the theater, people were practically on the floor laughing. One guy next to me was so worked up he jumped up on his chair and spent most of the movie squatting on it so that he would have more room to roll and sway with every joke. The thing is, the jokes were coming one after the other so there was no point in trying to sit still in the seat. I imagine, without the waves of laughter that you experience in the theater, the jokes might fall flat watching this movie at home. This society is so careful to be politically correct, that we all seem to be walking on eggshells. Here comes this goofy, bull in a china shop of a movie trampling on everything in its way to get a laugh. There's something about everybody in this movie, especially Cameron Diaz, that makes it more than just funny.
If you loved "Men in black", "Independence day" or other similar brainless blockbusters don't listen to me because I'll probably steer you wrong. However, If you're like me and appreciate some intelligence in a story, I have one word for you. Ray. It doesn't get any better than this movie if you love to watch the process of creativity. Ray Charles of course was dripping with it. And since Jamie Foxx is Ray Charles so completely, it's like watching a documentary about how he worked and developed his own style. The movie has many other fascinating levels about his blindness, courage and even hard side, but watching the process by which Ray created one great hit after another, was riveting. That's all I have to say, except how many great movies does Taylor Hackford have to make before he's given an Oscar!
Deanna Durbin made many movies, mostly bad. But the ones that are good make all the others palatable, including "Lady on a train". She was a unique personality. Almost impossible not to like. For example, It's like watching John Wayne walk through one boring, formulaic plot after another and not minding because you just like John Wayne. So to be thoroughly charmed by Deanna Durbin, you have to inoculate yourself against the dumb plots she was given later in her career. First dose should be with one of the best stories. "It started with eve" That should win you over for anything to come later. Then it's good to go to the beginning, her first picture, "Three Smart Girls" when she was a little girl and won everyone's hearts ( but be warned the story and direction are bit creaky). Your third dose should be "Three smart girls grow up" by this time your ready to take on and enjoy any of her movies regardless of plot. I do admit to fast-forwarding past some of her singing in her later movies, but that's because they're badly placed in the story and tend to slow things down to a crawl. Bottom line, she's something special and not to be missed.
Every so often I have to put this film on to get a fix. I do that with films that have an undefinable something which gets under your skin. I'm not a baseball fan but I do the same thing with "The Natural." So why am I hooked on this picture? It's certainly not golf. I like the idea of it but I don't play it. I'm not into Zen, or partial to "angel" movies. Yet all of these ingredients are thrown into the hopper and worked over, by what I've come to realize is a brilliant director, and out comes a masterfully told story. I re-watch the movie, not sure what birdies or eagles are, just to daydream that if I followed Bagger's advice I too good be a great player. I watch it for Michael Ballhous's poetic cinematography. Or for the great 30's costumes draped on a ravishing Charlize Theron. Or for the fantastic performances from Charlize, Matt Damon, Will Smith especially the boy explaining why he loves the game so much. Then when I think I'm cured, I have to watch it again for Rachel Portman's incredible score which cements the other-worldliness of this story so beautifully. I guess if I looked hard I could find flaws, but I don't want to. Sometimes it's better not to analyze things that seem in perfect balance without disturbing that balance. I guess time will cure me. I hope it's not too soon.
There are certain stories that are so original and intrinsically entertaining that they get reinvented every 20 or 30 years. Case in point, "The shop around the corner", which became "In the good old summertime" and finally "You've got mail". That's the kind of originality that runs through this story. Premise: A young married couple about to be parted for 3 years, both to do duty in her Majesty's Royal Navy in WWII. He's timid and boring. She's mousy and sickly. He becomes bold and manly. She blossoms into an attractive and assertive woman. Both now dread having to meet each other again after several years separation, remembering only how each partner use to be like. What happens when they meet again is pure fun. Why are there no remakes of this terrific story? We've had plenty of new wars to use as a background. People still change, sometimes for the better, during long separations. I have a VHS copy of this story taped from TV years ago. I only wish they would sell this movie again, while we wait for the updated script someone should write.