Intermittently, I feel like I’m lost in pop culture … TG and I went to a party yesterday, and it ended sooner than we thought, and Middle Guy was having some friends over, so we decided to go to the movies; the choices were ‘Constantine,’ ‘Sideways,’ and ‘Hitch.’
We hadn’t seen any of them, and so decided to see Sideways.
Half an hour in, I was wishing we hadn’t. I sat through it, and as we walked out, asked TG what she’d thought of it.
“I can’t for the life of me understand why it’s up for an Oscar.”
“Neither can I.”
I don’t for a moment get it. Compared to ‘Aviator’ or ‘Million Dollar Baby’ – this movie is just pathetically weak. it is weakest where – for the kind of small ensemble movie it is – it ought to be strongest, in the relationships between the characters and our relationship with them.
Each of the four lead actors felt like they were off doing an individual workshop exercise – or whatever. And to be honest the women were simply there as punching bags for the two dislikable male characters to seek as prizes – sexual and otherwise.Character notes don’t make characters.
But the main problem with the film is the one I mentioned in my comments on ‘Gunner Palace’ (which did get a PG-13 rating, BTW). The author has to respect, and ideally like, their characters. In Aviator – with a deranged central character – it’s clear that Scorcese does both. In MDB, it’s obvious from the getgo that Eastwood loves and honors his characters. It’s not clear that this writer and director give much of a damn about their characters – and so why should I?
In it’s defense, there’s good talk on Pinot, tho. And sorry, but Jocko’s in Nipomo blows The Hitching Post out of the water as far as Central California BBQ restaurants are concerned.
We wish we’d seen ‘Constantine.’ And say that knowing that I hate Keannu Reeves acting in everything he’s ever done.