Saturday, September 17, 2005

Late Night Sob-fest

So Tam and I watched a movie last night... The Way We Were. Clearly, this was not my pick, but in light of the fact that I dictate roughly 95% of the movies we watch, I didn't feel like I should squawk too loudly.

All-in-all, it wasn't too bad of a movie. It's a Streisand movie from before she went batshit crazy, and started insisting that the camera lens be slathered in vaseline every time it was pointed at her. She does her New Yawk hyper-active thing, but at least it was a defining characteristic, and not just needless scenery-chewing.

Robert Redford, however, comes off as errily wooden. He relies far too heavily on his amazingly white teeth (which are indeed very white), and doesn't seem to be very engaged in the story. He phones it in, which is not something I associate with Redford. Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid is one of my favorite movies, but in this movie he didn't connect. I can see how that might be intentional, given the storyline, but it damages the romantic narrative when one half of the couple outshines the other so completely. I was left wondering what the heck Katie was doing with Hubbell in the first place, and I can't believe that was the film's intention.

There was also a heavy-handed subplot dealing with the HUAC hearings, but it's used mostly as a tool to contrast Hubbell's passivity and compromise with Katie's passion and integrity. If you're looking for a movie about the Commie witchhunts, I'd go with the Front or the one Clooney's got coming out.

Tam liked this movie more than I did (not a shocker). I was surprised at how well it flowed, though. It seemed like a pretty short movie to me. The ending is a massive bummer, but you can see it coming from a mile away.

The movie does, however, feature a young, creepy James Woods, so bonus points awarded there.


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