As a reward for finishing up a big project today, I dusted off my latest netflix movie and settled in for some entertainment. I felt pretty sure I would like this movie because it’s about a piano player who plays Rachmaninoff.
Well, Shine was a bit disappointing. Though I am always happy to see someone with a physical challenge (like mental illness) portrayed in a positive way, the writers came up with a maudlin and predictable plot. Not even the ugly-man-bare-buttock-humor was redeeming (unlike in Waking Ned Devine, A Room With a View, or Bean).
More than anything I was annoyed that the piano scenes were awful. I wanted _real_ playing, not a poor imitation. And the concertos were all chopped up throughout the movie. What a shame.
Not sure why this movie was Oscar material–feeling pretty disappointed in the sad, sad state of American cinema. Does anyone out there have any really great movies to recommend?
IMDB pegs it as an Australian movie, not an American one, so you can be worried about the sad state of their cinema. Scott Hicks, director, is an Aussie. Sleep well knowing that American cinema is just as great as its always been!
I recommend finding an actor you like and just getting everything you can with that person from Netflix. I’d start with Cary Grant and Jean Arthur–they were even in a Frank Capra movie (since you like “It’s a Wonderful Life”) together: “Mr. Deeds Goes to Town.”
Thanks for the recommendation. I haven’t seen “Mr Deeds” and I should watch it. I’m adding it to my netflix queue right now.
But some days I’m not in the mood for a “classic” and I want something dramatic and meaty (like what i supposed that “Shine” would be). Something like “Chinatown” or “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” or “Horse Whisperer” or “Contact” or “Camille Claudel.” Those types of movies seem so few and far between…
I’m also always looking for lush and romantic pieces like “Lady Jane.” Any ideas in that genre, either?
I was disappointed in it too.
I suddenly can;t think of movies that I have liked. All will be Illuminated was good. I met Jphn Irving at an event last week and saw the movie of Cider House Rulse, which was very true to the book.
Speaking of Australia (ny father is an Aussie), Rabbit Proff Fence was interesting.
I liked Mr Deeds too. I’m always a sucker for Casablanca and the African Queen. I love the relationship of Nick and Nora in the Thin Man movies.
It’s embarrassing, but it’s OK to admit embarassing things like this to other parents on the internet. I always liked Land Before Time.
I better stop before I tell you all the other juvenile movies I still like.
There’s always Lawrence of Arabia, one of the very best movies ever made.
Um, did you see Elizabeth? Not particularly historically accurate, but Cate Blanchett is magnificent. (Though there is more of icky Jeffrey Rush.)
Or the BBC version of the life of James II, with Rufus Sewell in the lead role? It was called, let’s see, The Last King. It’s very cool.
Speaking of Rufus Sewell, I love him. He was fabulous in the BBC adaptation of Middlemarch and really hot in Cold Comfort Farm.
Or, if you’re a fan of the likes of Chinatown, watch everything with the AMAZING Faye Dunaway–Network is MUCH better than Chinatown.
For that matter, if you’re interested, I’d be happy to have you and John as Netflix friends. My taste isn’t quite like yours–I LOATHED Napoleon Dynamite and don’t think The Princess Bride has aged particularly well–the gender stuff really bugs me now–but I have rated almost 1300 movies and series and you could get a lot of ideas for things to watch from my ratings. My current TV love is Veronica Mars–I think I might like it even better than Buffy.
Anyway, if you want to be Netflix friends, let me know and I’ll send you an invitation–or you can invite me. And it won’t hurt my feelings if you don’t.
Period pieces … two of my favorite are Impromptu (re: the affair between George Sand and Frederick Chopin), and A Man for All Seasons (Sir Thomas Moore and family).
Some grittier, newer films … Born into Brothels, Crash.
Also, for the smaller screen, House, Arrested Development (which has been cancelled … boooo!) and The Office are fabulous.