Friday, April 17, 2009

Netflix Fridays: What Are We Watching Now?

Ok, so I knew we'd get a little back-logged this week and we did, but we did a lot of work this week (and rewarded ourselves with The Office, season 3 which made the perfect thing to have on while painting/ cleaning.) So we're actually between cycles right now.

But we did have the opportunity to see The Reader this week and I have to confess, we were underwhelmed. Kate Winslet did just hit it out of the park every mili-second she was on screen, but the writing felt very under-developed, especially in the first half which left the second half feeling very empty for me. I just didn't have a lot invested in these characters or their relationship, so there wasn't much emotional payoff when it was over. Hopefully Frost/ Nixon and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button will fair better... but I'm not holding my breath. What can I say? I'm a very fickle Oscar Nazi this year!


  1. Corrine and I watched the Reader too. I read the novel and was .. um ... disappointed. BUT, knowing it was a translation from German, figured the thinness of the story gt lost because of the language. I don't know. Maybe Germans are able to cull more from less. Read more into the narrative than me.

    So...I love Kate Winslet. And I heard she was naked. A lot. So, come on, I HAD to get this movie.

    We were moved..a little. We were thoughtful afterward ... a little.

    I hate to say this, but I was expecting a Schindler moment. And not because both dealt with the Holocaust. And not because I think all movies must have a "happy" ending.

    But, movies - like books - must have a moment of gestalt (get it? I used German in my comment! tee hee)

    There's got to be a point where, at the end, even if the main characters die, I feel good inside. I I feel...enriched.

    I get the point of The Reader: do we blame the trigger-pullers? Or those who blindly obeyed their leaders? Or society for turning a blind eye? Is there anyone to blame or no one? I get it. It's a very German argument, if you know your history.

    But...the romantic in me wanted more at the end. I don't mean something artificial like them jumping in the sack again. God, that would have been ugly. I mean something...richer.

  2. Warning-There will be spoilers!

    I simply can't share the sentiments of Jami and Andy on this film. I really loved The Reader, mainly for the reasons that the others seem to have a problem with it. I loved that it was incredibly understated in it's narrative, that at it's core, in many ways, it's a basic human story. I am fine with a film that is made up of small moments instead of going for the 'And I never learned to read' moment (and this film could have certainly played that up. I wouldn't say it's a romantic film (but I also don't feel that it's the film's aim either.). But I do feel there is a beautiful emotional chord struck towards when the adult Michael (Ralph Finnes) starts recording the books for Hannah.

    I will say, I saw this film in the theater and not on video and possibly, it is one of those films that benefits from a large screen viewing.