Julie&Julia

Posted by Posted by Karmander On 10:30 AM

Well, I saw it, over the weekend, with my mom. We filed into the theatre with 5 other 50+ year olds, and as we sat and waited for the movie to start, old lady after old lady filed into the theatre, people who clearly NEVER venture into a movie theatre anymore because there's just no damn thing to see anymore. I leaned over to my mother and whispered (because she has a sense of humor about such things) "It's like we're in a nursing home". Not to say this movie is "uncool" but with hip and happening movies worth seeing out, like Ponyo and District 9 out, I was just ever so slightly displeased to be sitting for THIS particular showing. Nevertheless, I clung to the ever charming, ever talented, and ever cool Meryl Streep as my excuse for suffering the inclusion in "this" particular audience.

And I was rewarded for my avoidence of prideful, vainful folly. The movie wasn't particularly funny outside the Julia Childs storyline, but it was mildly charming. I did find myself wishing a different director with a more artistic eye were at the helm. Nora Ephron deals with emotions and personality, and not so much with the visual cues. And this movie BEGGED for more creative camera work. Delightful spinning pans of bakeries and fish markets, bread shops and various other food shops...it just didn't really exist. Sure, they went to these places because the story demanded it, but there was no revelling in the sheer fairytale delight of it all. This too wouldn't have been such a problem if it hadn't so clearly enraptured and delighted both main characters in the movie. They loved food because of the visceral experience of it, but the movie kind of looked at these dishes sideways, like it was on a diet or something. Am I being fussy? Yeah. But the movie did a good job of delivering the point, that is, food is a passion in some people and the love of culinary art brings joy to them. The MOVIE itself, frame for frame seemed to shrug it's shoulders a bit about food. That just kind of bothers me. Film the food cooking, film the process, get a ton of close ups of forks sinking into the doughy depths of some decadant treat. I'm not saying the movie didn't show ANY "eating" shots, but it still lacked. I just think it was too concerned with trivial relationship matters, when the point was..."The joy of food". Perhaps they were going to another point, and if that's the case, they failed, because it was all about cooking. NOT a subject I would say I'm particularly interested in.


All that said, Streep was a revelation. She filled the screen with such tender joy and strength of character. It was inspiring. Sometimes I see a movie that puts me in such a good mood that I actually consider changing my sour, angsty, moody and depressed general disposition and just lighten the hell up. Hairspray comes to mind. (for another post :D) This one, the Julia Childs part of the movie, at least, put me in that kind of mood. However, Mrs. Childs had a wealthy and ridiculously loving husband, so, I imagine it's easy to find the joie de vivre when you're living in freaking Paris with the man of your dreams. Still, you get the sense that she had the same strength of character and joy BEFORE her dreams came true. And if Julia Childs can find love, why not me?

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