First off, my belated wishes for a very happy Thanksgiving! Besides everything and everyone I'm always thankful for, I just wanted to give a special shout out to AMC's Thanksgiving Day Hitchcock marathon - add Shadow of a Doubt and Rear Window to the Cowboys game, and I was able to stay almost sane cooped up in a hotel room last week.
I'm very behind on the news and my reading, but looks like the wonderful folks on the ol' blogroll have everything taken care of.
What prompts my return is that I watched Junebug for the second time last night, loved it even more, and wanted to spread the word. Besides being a wonderful movie, it's another example of a deeply conservative movie going right over liberal critics' heads. Yet, unlike Apatow's movies, the morality isn't couched in vulgarity, it's right out in the open, and still some reviewers just don't get it.
Exhibit A. The heart of the movie is Amy Adams' hyper-vivacious Ashley, who the critic says "talks because to be silent would be to confront her life's emptiness." B.S. The refined British visitor is clearly the empty one - Ashley is full of life, love, and God. But the critic, unsurprisingly identifying with Embeth Davidtz' sophisticated Madeleine, just doesn't get it. A key moment occurs when Ashley goes into labor and the entire family stays by her side at the hospital. The entire family, that is, except for Madeleine - she goes off instead to work on a business deal. The filmmakers are anything but subtle about this; some touching scenes at the hospital show us the importance of family, while some ridiculous scenes with her client illustrate the absurdity of Madeleine's career. Yet what does the Boston Globe critic write about this almost too obvious parallel? "At a certain critical juncture, George's family turns against this outsider artiste for reasons we're supposed to share, but such is Davidtz's deep-dish joy in her role that you're likely to stay on her side." Reasons we're supposed to share - you know, weird reasons, like love and family over business. Sheesh.
Anyway, ranting aside, the movie is definitely worth a look. And yes, Amy Adams is everything radiant and wonderful and just plain good.
here's the trailer:
and here's the opening song, light and fun: