Amy Adams and Meryl Streep are together again after their Oscar-nominated performances in Doubt. But even though they play the title characters in Julie and Julia, they don’t have any scenes together. As a matter of fact, they are separated not only by an ocean but by more than 30 years. [Read more…] about Julie & Jula: Mastering The Art of Great Chick Flicks
Archives for August 2009
Love on the Rocks
After the release of the Time Traveler’s Wife and Julie & Julia, there is a slight lull in release of chick flicks at the theaters. But here are a few new DVDs that deal with a variety of relationship problems. Let’s watch Julia Roberts and Beyonce show us how to handle ‘love on the rocks‘.
Clive Owen and Julia Roberts star in the smart and funny caper movie, Duplicity. They play Claire Stenwick and Robert Koval, corporate spies with a steamy past who team up to steal top secret research about a personal care products from rival corporations. As former spies, Claire and Robert have difficulty trusting each other, which makes for some really funny scenes between the two stars.
Beyoncé stars with Idris Elba and Ali Larter in Obsessed. A successful business man (Elba) with a beautiful wife (Knowles) becomes the target of a female stalker (Larter). How can you not compare this movie to Fatal Attraction? But this time the wife is played by Beyonce’, who doesn’t like it when someone messes with her man.
A good job is hard to find, but look how these ladies handle their business. One solves crimes and the other cleans up after them.
Sunshine Cleaning stars Amy Adams (Julie & Julia, Doubt) as a single-mom and former ex-cheerleader who is now cleaning houses. She is desperate to earn enough money to pay her son’s school tuition. When her on-again, off again boyfriend Mac (Steve Zahn), a police detective, tells her how much money there is in crime-scene cleanup, she enlists her sister, played by Emily Blunt to join her in the gory and unusual business. Did I mention it is a comedy? This charming movie comes from the producers of Little Miss Sunshine and was a hit at the Sundance Film Festival.
The No. 1 Ladie’s Detective Agency
Neo- Soul singer Jill Scott, who was excellent in Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married, stars in her own series on HBO. Based on the best-selling novels of Alexander McCall Smith, The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency follows the adventures Precious Ramotswe as she solves mysteries in her native country, Botswana. Filmed in Botswana and parts of South Africa, the The No. 1 Ladie’s Detective Agency is as faithful as it can be to the books.
Read the book: The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency
Catch up with your favorite TV series
This one brings back memories: thirtysomething: The 1st Season
The ladies of Wisteria Lane are as desperate as ever in Desperate Housewives: The 5thSeason
This site might be dedicated to Chick Flicks, but since I’m trying to redefine the meaning of that term, I am going to talk about one of the best shows on TV. AMC’s award-winning series, Mad Men takes place in the 1960s. Before the Woman’s Movement, Civil Rights or even pantyhose. It is compelling to watch this reconstructed 1960’s world through our politically correct, 21st-century eyes. [Read more…] about 5 Reasons You Should Watch Mad Men
That’s the first word I thought of when I saw (500) Days of Summer. The movie stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel as unlikely lovers in this off beat and refreshing romantic comedy.
This is a boy meets girl story. It is not a love story.
(500) Days of Summer tells the story of Tom Hansen (Gordon-Levitt), a young greeting card artist and wanna-be architect who longs to meet the perfect girl, fall in love and get married. See what I mean about refreshing? Enter Summer… Summer Finn, that is. Zooey Deschanel’s Summer is the “girl next door” that all the guys seem to fall for. She’s cute and funny and quirky and if she wasn’t so dang much fun, she would be the kind of girl who all the other girls hate. So naturally Tom falls for Summer. But as the narrator says (did I mention there is a narrator?) , this is not a love story.
The thing that makes Summer a very different Chick Flick character is she doesn’t believe in love. Gasp! She just wants to date, have fun with no commitments. (I think I heard applause from the men in the audience). (500) Days of Summer follows the couple as things go from idyllic to horrific in a series of non-linear vignettes.
One of the other refreshing things about 500 Days of Summer, is that it is musical. No, its not a musical, but the way music is used in the movie it helps to carry the story along. For instance, Tom starts to fall for Summer when he learns that they share a love of The Smiths. He is listening to “Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want“. Or when he walks to work, feeling on top of the world, the morning after (well, you know) and bursts into dance to Hall and Oates’ “You Make My Dreams Come True”. Regina Spektor’s “Us” runs throughout the movie as we watch poor Tom go through the highs and lows of (you guessed it) 500 days of Summer. You really should check out the soundtrack.
This type of film making certainly is not main stream, but again the word refreshing comes to mind. Take this scene, where after breaking up with Tom, Summer invites him to a party. He is desperate to get her back and imagines how the evening will go. (Yeah right…like you haven’t rehearsed an important date in your mind 100 times before hand?) There is a split screen of the party.
Expectation vs. Reality
Best known for directing music videos, Marc Webb has made a funny and entertaining movie that doesn’t follow a traditional style of story telling. But you never get bored, which is more than I can say for some movies I’ve seen recently. And somehow I couldn’t help hoping that things might work out for Summer and Tom. Maybe it just the romantic in me. I love a happy ending. But it does have a happy ending, just not the one you expect.
Have you seen 500 Days of Summer? What did you think?
I was planning to go the movies to see the Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler, in The Ugly Truth. The movie looked like the perfect, although formulaic chick flick.
But before Saturday had even rolled around, I read not one, but six BAD reviews about The Ugly Truth. In fact, I couldn’t find a blog, website, newspaper or person who had one good thing to say about his movie.
Apparently there is a scene involving vibrating panties and a business meeting that cause a few chuckles.
Really? Is this what passes for romantic comedy these days? The same old cliche’ of the hard-nosed career woman falling for the charms of a rough macho man are just plain tired.
Come on people….We want better Chick Flicks! Say it with me…WE WANT BETTER CHICK FLICKS!!!
Required Reading: Dating 101
So I saved myself $10.00 and pulled from my Netflix que, He’s Just Not That Into You. Somehow I missed this movie when it was in the theaters. But now I want to buy it. The movie stars Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Aniston, Ben Affleck, Justin Long, Bradley Cooper, Kevin Connelly, and Scarlett Johanson who are facing various relationship problems in the modern world.
The movie is loosely based on the book of the same name by Greg Behrendt. The movie starts with one of the truest and most influential scenes ever filmed. Women are indoctrinated with an insidious lie that makes many of us fall victim to the wrong guy over and over again.
From childhood we are told that if a guy ignores you, is mean to you, treats you badly, doesn’t call you when he says he will, or in any other way acts like a real jerk–Well, it’s obvious, he likes you. Of course, he likes me. That’s right, he likes me so much and he is afraid of the intimacy, so he is ignoring me. What a load of bull%#@ (ohhh wait, this is a PG blog).
This is one of the many things I liked about He’s Just Not That Into You. It’s not the typical Chick Flick. In fact, take a look at the short promotion trailer in my sidebar, featuring 3 of the male stars that gives 10 typical chick flick clichés that the movie does not contain.
The story centers around Gigi, played by Ginnifer Goodwin (Once Upon A Time). Gigi is like many of us. She goes out with a guy, has a nice time and when he says “I’ll call you sometime”. She foolishly believes he will call. In fact, poor Gigi waits by the phone, constantly checks her voice mail and even drops by his favorite bar hoping to “accidentally” run into him. Why am I saying foolish? Like you haven’t done at least one of these things (or worse)?
Anyway… while under the pretense of returning a lost pen, Gigi meets the Alex who is played by Justin Long. (You may know him as the MAC guy in the PC vs. MAC commercials. I remember him from the Star Trek spoof, Galaxy Quest). Alex sets Gigi straight on the way men think. If a guy doesn’t call you, he is not interested. Plain and simple.
A few years ago, I had a similar conversation with a male friend who I was hoping would turn into a boyfriend, but unlike Gigi, I refused to believe it can be that simple. Please…Ladies, Chicas, Girlfriends… Believe me… it’s that simple. We are not the exception, we are the rule.
Other story lines follow Scarlett Johanson as an aspiring singer who becomes involved with a married record company executive, played by Bradley Cooper (recently seen in The Hangover); Jennifer Aniston, who is in a 7-year relationship with Ben Affleck, a man who doesn’t believe in the institution of marriage. Drew Barrymore’s character is an advertising sales rep at a magazine geared towards the gay community who is having difficulty with dating in this technology driven world.
“I had this guy leave me a voicemail at work, so I called him at home, and then he emailed me to my BlackBerry, and so I texted to his cell, and now you just have to go around checking all these different portals just to get rejected by seven different technologies. It’s exhausting.”
The movie takes each of their relationships through some twists and turns, and while its not a perfect movie, I really enjoyed He’s Just Not That Into You.