Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hope Springs

This movie stars Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones as an almost elderly couple who have been married for 31 years. They haven't had sex in 5 years or so and they never touch or even really talk.. They share nothing except a house- they don't even share a bedroom.  SO they go to an intensive marriage counseling week at a charming town in Maine (really Connecticut -but who cares) where the marriage counselor (Steve Carrell) helps them work through it. And for the love of all that is holy, it is the MOST DAMN BORING movie ever made. Seriously. It's like you've been there for those 5 years.  I kept wishing I had a remote to fast forward through the misery that is Tommy Lee Jones in this. And Meryl Streep plays a character who is about 62-and is digusted by sex, etc. Excuse me??? If she is around 62, she was in college in the late 60s- was she in a cave? a nunnery? a cult? Her character is such a boring woman. This movie was so unrealistic. And so many pauses. And so many stupid and contrived moments. Nothing about it was good but the lovely room they get at the Inn. I'm going to look that one up to see if it is real or just a set.  Otherwise, SKIP IT and don't even watch it on cable. EVER. I'll give it 1 star - I don't even know why.

Ruby Sparks

A writer (Paul Dano) suffers a severe case of writer's block after having published a blockbuster novel and having been proclaimed a "genius"- the kiss of death in creativity. The pressure freezes his brain. But his shrink suggests he do a specific writing exercise, and voila!- the woman he imagines is perfect and is his total creation- so of course, in she walks into his life. Really. Named Ruby Sparks (Zoe Kazan- Dano's real life girlfriend as well as the writer of the film), and everyone else can see her, too. Now there is a novel in the making.  Some people want to compare this to all the other films based on this idea- but I would prefer to simply say there is a charm and inventiveness to this film. Dano plays the reclusive and inept boyfriend with just the right intensity. Kazan is the appropriate level of charming and goofy- she's written herself a role full of opportunity.  Of course, the viewer can pull a lot of analysis into the characters- I found the ending to be a cop out- but it certainly is one of the best movies this year. I would hope Dano and Kazan win an award or two for what they accomplished.