Thursday, November 24, 2005

"I wanna smash the faces of those beautiful boys"

Thanksgiving dinner is eaten and my eyes are barely open, but it's time for me to present my own review of my least favorite movie. I would have done it sooner, but I had imagined that NaNoWriMo was going to monopolize my time for longer than it did. Still it was good to have guest hosts for the past several weeks...and in coming weeks as well.

It's hard for me to pick a least favorite movie. I've walked out on several, but it hardly seems fair to review a movie I have not seen all the way through. Often I enjoy a movie for what it's worth, or leave if I can't.

Then I remembered...there was a movie which, in itself, was not awful, but made me chuckle all the way through only to find, when the lights came up, that the audience had fallen for the great hoax - and loved the damned thing. I was pissed! and I've been pissed ever since. Hence Legends of the Fall is my least favorite movie.

This is one of those movies that I wasn't terribly excited to go see - a puffed up "epic" hollywood romance that has been done over and over. I know, I know. I'm the woman who reads romances. But, really, who takes romances seriously? Most people read them, as do I, as basically soft porn (although don't try to get your mother/aunt/neighbor to confess that...she'd rather be dead than let on).

But I had been asked to go see this movie with friends, and with the cast (Julia Ormond, Anthony Hopkins, Aidan Quinn & Brad Pitt), I thought it had a pretty good chance to be decent. The reviews were good. Not stellar, but good.

What had me chuckling was that the movie was basically a romance novel (without any of the good sex) set to film. It felt a little like I was in on a secret joke. Brad Pitt's character, with his long flowy hair, on a ship or riding around that ranch could have taken Fabio's place on any popular cover of the day. As the end came (and I think it was tragic...I don't honestly remember), I remembering stifling the urge to laugh aloud.

As the lights went up, I noticed the friends I had gone with wiping the tears from their eyes and exclaiming what a bloody brilliant film it had been, and that's when my distaste for it blossomed. This attraction of mine to romance novels had caught more flack in my past than almost any other quirk I possess. I was, for years, ashamed to be caught reading them. And here I stood, in the midst of a mediocre romance novel set to film, and it was being acclaimed.

Then I remembered the Bridges of Madison County fiasco. Not the movie - the book. A friend had given me the book saying that it was probably something I would like because I liked romantic stories. I started reading it, but it was crap. A romance, but not well written...and the only reason that I could figure out that it was getting any sort of acclaim was that it was a romance written by a man. Romances written by women are given covers and titles that promote ridicule, even when the writing is excellent and the story pretty original. I never finished the book (and certainly didn't see the movie).

This movie had the same feel to it...and because of that remains my least favorite movie.

Next week, I have a tentative confirmation from our friend Mark Reed...tentative because he has a few details occupying his time in the next week or so - you know, finishing a novel, moving into a new house. I need a possible back-up, if he isn't able to, so the first person to e-mail me that they'd be interested can be back-up. Don't all rush to your computers at once. Oh! and my e-mail's in my profile.

I promise to post some pictures from my Thanksgiving tomorrow. It was the best day I've had in a long time.


Aravis said...

You're so right about Legends of the Fall. I hated this movie too. I loved most of the actors in other films, but this was just a colossal waste of money. And I rented it, I didn't pay to see it in the theaters! I couldn't laugh at it though. I was alternately bored and disgusted. Sad, too, that such actors as Hopkins, Quinn and Ormond were somehow conned into starring. I had already started to lose interest in Pitt by that point so at least he wasn't as much of a disappointment for me.

I also agree with your assessment of Bridges of Madison County. What excellent taste you seem to have! ;0)

Fred said...

Never saw it. And, based on your review, I'm glad I didn't waste my money.

For what it's worth, my least favorite movie of all time was Popeye, with Robin Williams. I actually walked out of the movie theater.

red one said...

I'm so pleased I never watched that!

Spin - are you sure your email's on your profile? I looked a week or so back and couldn't find it. I've just looked again... am I missing something obvious?


Hyde said...

But they're beautiful boys...


Mr. Mystic said...

If you want to see a modern romance movie.
Go see Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang.

Its pretty artsy, so even if you don't like the movie you will love the colours and photography.

spinsterwitch said...

Thanks red for pointing that out. I've updated my profile.