Thursday, March 29, 2007

Kentucky doesn't hold a candle to Jersey

I finished watching Elizabethtown just now. I didn't expect much. Orlando Bloom and Kirsten Dunst are not among my favorite actors. If anything, they're slightly more towards my less-than-favorite actors. I did go on a big Cameron Crowe kick a few years ago, though-- I enjoyed his films Almost Famous, Say Anything, Jerry Maguire.

But Elizabethtown just came out....eh. Not awful. Not obnoxious. Just bland and not wholly interesting. Orlando was-- ok. He didn't bother me, and he seemed to play his part ok-- whiz kid who screws up bigtime. Kirsten was really annoying in her first scene, but got sort of likable later. I actually think the highlight of this film was Alec Baldwin as Orlando Bloom's eccentric boss. He gets a great little reveal bit when Orlando walks into his office- you hear Baldwin's voice, and then there's a close up shot of his face, as if it were enough time for you to think-- hey. That's Baldwin.

Themes reminiscent of Garden State: death in the family, errant son goes back to a small town, meets whimsical bohemian carefree type girl that changes his life.

Product Placement Identical to Garden State: Rolling Rock, Apple products (monitor in Garden State, monitors and laptops in Elizabethtown).

The sad and empty thing about Elizabethtown, especially when compared to Garden State is that, while prettily shot, with an elaborate and neat rock soundtrack, there was an emotional vitality or heart that was lacking, and I can't say that I cared about Orlando's character's problem all that much.

And Kirsten Dunst's take on the carefree bohemian chick...sort of cute. But I didn't really buy it.

In the end, it wasn't a waste of my time, but it didn't add much of value, either.

Actually, there were some really good roadtrip sequences that gave me a bit of nostalgia for road trips that I've taken, those were ok for that purpose. Can't say they added something that made the film more alive as a whole.