Is there irony in going to see a comedy that explores the pitfalls of love and more specifically Valentine’s Day, alone? I pondered that question as I walked home from the Director’s Guild of America’s Theater, where I saw a screening of the movie as part of my SAG Hollywood Film Society membership. It seemed a bit less lame to go to the movie by myself since it was part of the “film society”.
So, the movie…I should probably say a little something about that. I thought there were well done moments but it failed to utilize the talents of the huge (star studded) cast. I have to wonder what the payroll for this movie was!! Speaking of casting, let’s just hope that Taylor Swift hasn’t decided to pursue acting full-time.
My favorite character in the film is the city of Los Angeles. I loved how they spanned the city from the canals of Venice to Big Boy in Toluca Lake. They managed to show the soul of the city and avoid cliche’ locations like the Hollywood Sign, Santa Monica Pier, the Sunset Strip and Rodeo Drive. Well, Rodeo Drive makes a cameo appearance…watch the credits.
I was really surprised at how much I liked Ashton Kutcher in this film, but that means I'm surprised that I liked him at all. He seemed as real and down to Earth as I've ever seen and you kinda-actually care about what happens to him. Jennifer Garner was her sexy plus bad-ass combo self, especially with the baseball bat. I wonder if she picked up those skills being a baseball fan with Ben.
One of the themes of the film is that good guys CAN win. This was a timely theme for me as I’ve had this discussion with a few friends lately. I had been thinking about my own situation and how many amazing women that I have in my “friend zone”. One of the things that I pondered while walking home from the film was that the smell of what I think was magnolia, was unseasonable. What? Oh yeah, we’re talking about the movie and similar themes in my life. Well, I’ll ease back into that with a little story.
There was this girl in the theater and she sat in the row behind me and she...gasp...was also by herself. The power of a Valentine movie and two people so close in proximity had me dreaming of a Hollywood ending for the two of us. I think the cinema-inspired fantasy made her a way better target than she actually was, because when I saw her in the lobby after, she was average in looks and annoying on the phone with her friend. No Hollywood ending…no happy North Hollywood ending, either!
Back to the theme of the movie, where the nice/good/loyal/romantic guy can ‘get the girl’ and how that relates to my ‘friend zone’ issue. I am wondering if my search for “her” is too focused on strangers. Do I already know “her”? Is “she” already a resident of the “friend zone” ready to move up in the JDE? I don’t know this for sure, but I’m going to be looking at some of my friends in a whole new way.
I’d love to hear what people think about these things. Please feel free to leave your thought under comments.
What did you think of this review?