Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Ruby Sparks | Wuthering Heights | Silver Linings Playbook | Liberal Arts


Ruby Sparks tells the story of a young author, Calvin (Paul Dano) who is struggling to write a follow up to his highly successful debut novel. When he has a dream about a beautiful girl (Ruby) he quickly starts writing up a story about her, then one day he wakes to find her in his apartment, in the flesh.
The premise sounds ridiculous but this is actually a beautifully told romance story that is often a very real depiction of a relationship in the real world. For the most part I was swooning over these characters and got lost in the beautiful romance they shared. But it was the ending that left me thinking a lot, and not in a good way. It had too many flaws and ultimately made me frustrated that Zoe Kazan (plays Ruby/wrote the script) would end it that way. But I will leave that with you to make up your mind about rather than give anything away.
One nice thing to add about the movie is Zoe and Paul are in a relationship ouside of the film and so are the directors of the movie as well. I thought that was kinda cute.


This film is one of many interpretations based on Emily Brontes classic novel of the same name. I have never seen a Wuthering Heights film nor have I read the book, so I have nothing to compare it to. So be mindful of that when reading my review.
This film has gone through a number of changes before production actually began, including directorial changes as well as casting changes. Healthcliff was initially white then was changed to being of Gypsy/Roman descent then was officially changed to be of African descent. I think James Howson and Solomon Glave were perfectly casted as Heathcliff. I felt differently about the actresses who played Catherine though. I can't explain why but they irritated me beyond belief.
I thought Andrea Arnold's vision was beautiful. There are some really breathtaking shots in this film. But as a whole, I couldn't get over how bleak and miserable it all looked. I get it, it's England, it rains a lot there and it adds a lot to the overall feel of the film, but man, it's just beyond depressing. To add to that there were some scenes that were cruel to dogs and that just felt so unnecessary. Being a dog lover, that made me feel utterly miserable and made me dislike the film a whole lot more.
It's a sad, yet beautiful story that I think I would like to see again but perhaps a different version. Or maybe even just read the book.


I went into this movie having no clue what the storyline was, just that I had heard nothing but positive reviews about it and that it starred Jennifer Lawrence, Jacki Weaver, Robert De Niro and more. I also found out after, that it's directed by David O. Russell who did Three Kings and one of my personal favourites, I Heart Huckabees. So what did I think of it after leaving the cinema? I was pretty darn pleased.
This is such an original film with really great performances that keep you intrigued for the duration of the film.
And Jennifer Lawrence, so hot right now. I will see anything with her in it.
I'm not, however, the biggest fan of Bradley Cooper, but this movie made me change my mind about him. He plays a screwed up character but manages to provide some laughs and ends up being very entertaining.
Definitely check this one out.


I can't decide how I feel about this film. It's kind of hard to get over the fact that this was an opportunity for Josh Radnor (Director, Writer and Star of the film) to be a tad bit self indulgent. He constantly makes references to his love of books and writers. I get it, it's a key part of the film (books), but I feel like he's trying to be the next Zach Braff (i.e. Garden State) and it's already been done. But I have to remember this movie is no new trend so I shouldn't criticise him for, perhaps, being inspired by films like Garden State.
I like the montage where Jesse (Radnor) and Zibby (Elizabeth Olsen) are exchanging letters across states sharing and discussing classical music, it's a really beautiful moment in the film. And there are a few other nice moments like this.
The film managed to keep my attention throughout but I can definitely see audiences becoming distracted during this one. It has some great moments but isn't overall a very strong movie. I am curious, however, to see Radnors other feature film; Happythankyoumoreplease.