403 Forbidden


nginx
403 Forbidden

403 Forbidden


nginx
Follow us:
403 Forbidden

403 Forbidden


nginx

Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

January 8, 2010 at 11:39 AM

The rom-com blues (again), and a “Moonstruck” revisit

It seems like I spend a lot of time kvetching about the state of the Hollywood romantic comedy. (It’s like the weather: everybody talks about it, but nobody ever does anything about it.) But “Leap Year,” opening this weekend, is just the umpteenth example of what’s happened to what should be (and once was) the most delightful of genres. With a few rare exceptions (“(500) Days of Summer” was one), the makers of rom-coms seem to have just given up on witty dialogue, originality, and genuine romance. Instead, what we get is two cute actors paired up, with little thought as to whether they’d have any chemistry; some elaborate plot device that allows them to meet, hate each other, and eventually (and implausibly) fall in love; a vomit scene; and some raunchy and/or humiliating sight gags. I mean, if you’re watching “Leap Year,” and you see Amy Adams gamely hiking up that hill in her high heels, do you doubt for a second that a) it’s going to start raining, b) her train will come while she’s still up the hill, and c) in running for the train she falls in the mud? It’s utterly predictable; and worse, it’s neither funny nor charming. Amy deserves better; so do we.
And so here, for the weekend, is a reminder of a romantic comedy that’s better; a movie that’s full of witty, literate dialogue; that’s populated with marvelous actors all given room to create memorable characters of their own; and that has at its center a love story that’s both wickedly funny and swooningly romantic. It is “Moonstruck,” and it’s 23 years old this year and hasn’t aged a day. Director Norman Jewison wasn’t afraid to soak this film in atmospheric music — the perfect “That’s Amore” over the opening credits; the lush, gorgeous score to “La Boheme” — and to let the actors find magic. Watch, in this clip, the lovely shots of Cher walking home, in her opera finery, kicking a can on a street in the early-morning quiet, and how she twirls into her kitchen at home, still swept away by Puccini and romance. (And watch how quickly her mother, played by the wonderfully dry Olympia Dukakis, brings her down to earth. Her delivery of “It was a miracle,” as if the line is something she wants to bite, just kills me.) I love this movie, and just may have to rewatch it this weekend, to erase “Leap Year” and its ilk from my head. Have a good one, all.

Comments

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


403 Forbidden

403 Forbidden


nginx
403 Forbidden

403 Forbidden


nginx