Sunday, April 19, 2009

Grey Homes & Gardens, or Down and Out in the Hamptons

Damn! Which is which here?
Awright, let's crank out a damn review here. Sorry, folks, but my level of pun headlines is down. Partly because it's late, but mostly because it's hard to think of one in this case. I was busy trying to think of other shut-ins: The Aviator? True West? Helpmates? You know, I just saw a list today of the top 7 body switching movies; no doubt prompted by the impending release of the latest Zac Efron delivery device, 17 Again. How sad, now Matthew Perry, in attempting to siphon off some of that Efron magic, has become like Tom Selleck siphoning off some of that Friends magic. Oh yeah, I was also reminded of that similar spell that Schmidt went through in About Schmidt.
In case you didn't already know, Grey Gardens (2009) is the story behind the story of the Maysles' documentary Grey Gardens (1975). And as you can tell from the image I so hastily slapped together, it's a damn faithful recreation. And even though that, as one of my viewing companions pointed out, these two women aren't terribly sympathetic people, I couldn't help but feel their plight as they slowly shake loose all their earthly companions and end up like an old married couple. And they're mother and daughter, for crying out loud! That Gould guy was awfully quick to run off; that could've probably been made a little more explicit why. Was it really just the bills? And the novelty wearing off? Not to ruin it for you or anything, but Jackie-O shows up late in the third act, and a little conveniently after they first get attention in the press, I might add. Humph! As the elder Beale might say.
I've not much to report other than that. I'd say it was a worthwhile show. I guess it's the kind of thing that couldn't get a theatrical release, which is a shame because Lange and Barrymore ought to get SOME kinda nomination. At least a Golden Globe; a little more prestigious than an Emmy. No big names in the director's chair or the DP's chair, but I guess they're not as relevant anymore. Oh, I just hate the idea of Jessica Lange getting old, but on the bright side, she's still got it. One of my viewing companions wondered aloud why the daughter couldn't just run away, but they just don't understand: when you're damn near American royalty, there's just nowhere to run to. And besides! They don't run: they walk. Running's just not dignified.

-so sayeth the Movie Hooligan

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