This whole week, I've been working full time at the paper, which means I've been waking up early and going to bed early. Therefore, I looked forward to sleeping in today. Guess what time I woke up? 7:30 a.m. I was so determined to sleep in, I just stayed in bed until 8:45, trying to will myself to go back to sleep. It didn't work.
I decided that since I was up so damn early on a Saturday, I would go see a movie I had been wanting to see for a week: Julie and Julia. The plus of going early on a Saturday? AMC does this thing where any movie is $6 before noon. It's pretty great if you’re broke. Or cheap. Or if you wake up early for no fucking reason on a Saturday morning.
I really wanted to see this is because I thought it looked like an interesting idea, combining two life stories of women living in two very different times with two very different lives. Plus, anything with Meryl Streep I will see because, well, it's Meryl Streep!
I don't want to say I was disappointed, because there was a lot about the film I really enjoyed. But, about half of it I thought was pretty disappointing. Want to guess which half?
Meryl Streep was amazing. She was natural and did a great job portraying Julia Child as a woman who struggled with a lot but was grateful for all the amazing things she did have. Julia Child is a true legend and no one other than another legend could have played her so well. Stanley Tucci was a great choice to play Paul Child and there was an intimacy between the two of them that made the scenes very real and wonderful. It wasn't necessarily passion or fire, but more like that of a couple that has been through a lot together and are truly in love and happy. I would have been so happy to see a movie about Julia Child with just the two of them.
If Nora Ephron(writer/director/ruiner of Bewitched) had any sense, she would have just made the movie about Julia Child and left it at that. But, can I really expect that from someone who completely messed up a chance to remake a classic? (If you haven’t seen Bewitched, don’t waste your time.)
Now, I really like Amy Adams. I think she is cute and full of energy and has a lot of potential. However, this was not a great role for her. I didn’t fall in love right away like I did when Streep came on the screen and the entire movie I kept waiting to really feel something positive for her, but I just couldn’t. In a nutshell, Julie Powell wanted to be a writer but no one would publish her book, so she just goes day to day feeling bad at her job until she decides to take on this enormous task of cooking her way through Julia Child’s cookbook and blogging about it. If felt that she just was a self-loathing pathetic character who is shown sitting inside an apartment writing instead of going out or doing, or hell, even cooking. Almost all the scenes are of Adams at a laptop with a voiceover of what she is writing. The best scene was when she has to boil lobster and that is just because Ephron actually showed it! As much as I love to read and write, making a movie where someone spends her time writing her blog is not entertaining.
Plus, when you look at the great relationship Paul and Julia Child had and the way that Tucci and Streep played these characters, you look at Adams and Chris Messina and feel like you are watching two high school actors playing their first romantic role. It’s so forced and you don’t really feel like they are in love or understand why they even got married. I looked up more about Julie Powell and found out that she had an affair shortly after this year of cooking was over, which made the distance between the two make a little bit of sense. However, since Ephron did not include this, the couple just did not work.
Like I said, I only paid $6, which is half of what AMC charges for a movie. Therefore, since I only truly enjoyed half of the movie, I think I got my money’s worth.