May 8, 2010


Yesterday I asked my sister how she wanted to spend her rare night off. She said she didn't remember how normal people (people with no children) spend their evenings, so we were very unimaginative and rented a movie. It came down to two musicals: Nine and Fame. We picked the wrong one.

Nine (2009)

Directed by Rob Marshall. Starring Daniel Day-Lewis, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, Judi Dench, plus all the other Oscar winning actresses in the world.

Long story short: The Italian director Guido Contini struggles with the script of his next movie. And the women in his life.

I'm a big fan of Chicago, so despite all the negative reviews Nine has received, I was ready to like it if possible. Well, I have to say, the reviews are right. Compared to Chicago, it was a disapointment. The story, if there was one, was just blah. It seemed so incoherent, just random singing and dancing sequences one after the other. Like my sister pointed out, someone probably had problems with the script of this film, too. Or that's what it seemed like.

The all-star cast didn't help much, but let's look at them more closely anyway. I often have problems when an actor is doing an accent I know is not their own. It takes a while to get use to it. With this movie I was bothered especially by Day-Lewis and Nicole Kidman's fake accents. But well. My own problem, really. Kidman made me want to watch Moulin Rouge!, because that's what I immidiately associated her singing with. Penelope Cruz was, I have to admit, hot. I always like Marion Cotillard. Kate Hudson's sequence was like a modern pop music video. Fergie was surprisingly good, her "Be Italian" music sequence was the catchiest, and that's when I got the only shivers of the film. (Though me and my sister both kept wondering how uncomfortable it must be for the dancers with all the sand flying at their faces all the time...) Judi Dench's character was my favorite, and her and Guido's dialogues were the best scenes in the poor movie.

I really don't have much more to say. The costumes were nice (though they looked very Chicago-ish (ok, that's not a word)) and some settings too. But well. It might've looked good, but it doesn't compensate for that sorry excuse for a plot. Me and my sister both agreed that we should've gone for Fame. We'll know better next time. Choose the one with no Oscar nominations.

"Directing a movie is a very overrated job, we all know it. You just have to say yes or no. What else do you do? Nothing. "Maestro, should this be red?" Yes. "Green?" No. "More extras?" Yes. "More lipstick?" No. Yes. No. Yes. No. That's directing."

Now it's Stand by Me time! Whoo! I'm ready to relate alarmingly well to 12-year-old boys! Bring it oooooon!


Harri said...

I would like to see this (even though reviews have been quite bad) because Chicago was funny, entertaining and well-made. And I love Federico Fellini's 8½ (isn't Nine some kind of "sequel" for it? 8½ was great, I really recommend it) so maybe I've to rent Nine some day.

Eeva said...

I agree, Chicago was funny and entertaining and so on, but unfortunately I can't say the same thing about Nine... Shame, really! But sure, watch it, there's always a chance that you like it more than I did.

And yes, I've heard a lot of good things about 8½ and it's on my must see list, but I just should take a grip of myself and actually watch it... I often postpone watching these supposingly "very very good" films, because I'm afraid I won't like them (and sadly, too often I don't).

Harri said...

You should take a chance and watch 8½. I don't want to build up your expectations but the film really is very very good (even though I didn't like it at all after first view...nowadays it's one of my favourite movies). Fellini is great.

Is there any reason why you keep your up blog in English, just to brush up your language skills?

Eeva said...

I have a couple of reasons... First, like you said, it's good practice. Second, since I study the language, pretty much all the writing I do these days is in English anyway, so it felt like a natural choice. And well, I guess I just like writing in English. Especially when the topic is film...

And I'll start orientating myself to watching 8½!

Harri said...

Hah, good explanations. Well it's fun to read about movies in English every once in a while. My skills get better too (I hope so, at least).

Write about 8½ if you watch it. :)