Saturday, February 17, 2007

Little Chidren

The worldview espoused in Todd Field movies troubles me. It may not be fair to evaluate his filmmaking on these terms, I know. Should film reviewers shelve their personal erspective when writing about a movie? Is it appropriate to only praise or discuss or analyze the technical/practical aspect of the filmmaking and simply "agree to disagree" on the thematic content?

Field absolutely demonstrates some ability here with a camera and he's good with actors. By no means do I think he's a bad director. (In person, though, kind of a tool...)

He's made two films now - In the Bedroom and Little Children - and based solely on them, I believe we share profoundly opposed ideologies. As a result, I'm not sure I'll be able to fairly evaluate the movies as movies. So keep that in mind as you read. Oh, also, I'll refrain from "giving away" the ending of Little Children, but I fully reserve the right to give away the ending of In the Bedroom. If you cared, you'd have seen it already.


Both of Field's films take on the same basic question: Does it make any sense for human beings to deny ourselves?

In the Bedroom opens with an impetuous May-December romance which is brutally interrupted by a poorly-planned murder and it closes with an aging couple making a decision to violate the law in the name of justice. These characters are AWARE from the beginning that they are breaking the rules, but they do so anyway because they can not deny themselves pleasure or satisfaction.

The mismatched couple could listen to reason, but they don't want to. Likewise, the angry ex-husband could pick up the shattered pieces of his life and move on, but he never does. Finally, the mourning couple could accept their son's death and process their anger in a healthy fashion, but it proves too difficult. So instead of bottling up their dangerous, buried desires, they're forced to act.

My problems with the film were numerous. I didn't really find its conclusion realistic and I didn't care for its reliance on silly old patriarchial stereotypes.

Real quick...The patriarchy thing, cause I know that's a strong charge to just throw out there. Sissy Spacek's character is lame. She's got the sinister Lady MacBeth thing going on, taunting his husband to act out violently without being willing to do any dirty work herself. PLUS, if you think about her actual on-screen action, it's all this lame '50s housewife imagery. Smashing plates, slapping young women in the face...It's like an episode of "The Donna Reed Show" gone horribly, horribly wrong. Why couldn't her character actually ever DO anything strong or determined? Why must she be so shrill?

I'm reminded of Chan-Wook Park's Sympathy for Lady Vengeance. Here, the women are still encouraging their men to commit savage acts of revenge, but they at least they get to take part. It's not such a Victorian send-out-the-menfolk-to-exterminate-the-brutes kind of deal.

But I also objected to what Ricky Roma might call Field's "middle-class morality." Namely, it's okay for a well-off suburban white couple to kill a man, if they feel like he really really deserves it. Would the film play the same for audiences if it was a young Latin couple? Or a poor white trash couple? Or just a single father? And what if the guy didn't kill their son, but only paralyzed him? Or what if he hit his intended target and killed their son's girlfriend? I mean, once you agree that vigilante revenge killing is acceptable...

Anyway, on to Little Children, which in its own way is even more disagreeable than In the Bedroom. The film centers around two crumbling marriages and a mother-son relationship in a wealthy suburban enclave. (I won't go into this subject any more, but it's possibly the whitest movie of the modern American era.)

Sarah Pierce (Oscar-nominated Kate Winslet) has grown so bored and frustrated with the life of a doting mother and housewife, she walks around with a permanent look of weary disdain and can barely manage to speak to her daughter without contempt. At the playground one afternoon, she meets the hunky father whom the other catty moms have dubbed "The Prom King." He's Brad (Patrick Wilson), a law student who can't pass the bar exam who spends his days caring for his young son while his successful wife Kathy (Jennifer Connelly) makes documentary films.

Sparks fly immediately between Sarah and Brad, so as responsible married people, they try to avoid one another for a while. But it becomes clear soon enough that there's more here than a passing, shared attraction. As soon as the smallest speed bumps in their marriages arise, it's an excuse to begin a passionate love affair.

This story of forbidden love mirrors another, somewhat more perverse narrative about paroled sex offender Ronnie McGorvey (Oscar-nominated Jackie Earle Haley). It's mentioned in passing that McGorvey did time for "indecent exposure," but he's pretty much an all-around creepy weirdo. In the film's best sequence, he goes on a very sweet date with a mentally ill woman, played perfectly by Jane Adams, before degrading her and making a fool of himself. He could be a normal guy with a normal life, but because he can't control his taboo sexual urges, he's a freak living with his mother (Phyllis Somerville) and being harrassed by an unstable ex-cop (Toby Noah Emmerich).

Unless they yield to their compulsions, Brad and Sarah and Ronnie cannot find peace. But once they have actually indulged, slept with the stranger or masturbated in public, their initial feelings of desperation don't subside. Instead, these inescapable, negative obsessions are enhanced by newfound feelings of guilt and shame.

These are not easy dilemmas, and the actors do a terrific job at physically embodying anxious tension, sexual frustration and panic. Kate Winslet doesn't even look very much like her old self as Sarah. Little Children is one of those movies that would never get nominated for Costume Design, because its style is so contemporary and subtle, but the art department nails every aspect of Sarah's look exactly right. (On the subject of award season, I would have thought Somerville as Ronnie's mother was the obvious choice for a supporting performance. She only has a few big scenes, but she's stellar, and we all know how Oscar loves a rascally, charming old lady.)

Adapating Tom Perrotta's novel, Field's starting with some fertile, interesting material. (They wrote the script together). And he's working with a very strong cast all around, save Toby Noah Emmerich, whose bullying ex-cop feels gratuitous and motivated purely by the needs of the plot. He's like a refugee from a Paul Haggis movie, alternating over-the-top moustache-twirling histrionics with mawkish sentimentality. Cinematographer Antonio Calvache likewise gets off some interesting shots, including a virtuoso sequence at a public swimming pool where a month's worth of events are coalesced into what looks like one, unbroken take.

But regrettably, the film still falls kind of flat. It's not a bad film by any stretch. I rather enjoyed watching it, actually. But Field on some level seems to lack confidence in his own ability. For a guy whose movies can come off as pretentious, it's strange to likewise feel that he's holding back and selling himself short. But here we are.

Perhaps the worst decision anyone made with regards to Little Children was in Field's and Perrotta's inclusion of a voice-over narration, with actor Will Lyman intrusively reading to the audience key passages from the book. (I can understand why a novelist might want to keep some of his own voice in the story, as it's such a big part of any book. But that's just not how film works.) Not once, not one single time, does the narrator prove himself useful. Lyman has a smokey, almost ominous tone as he reads Perrotta's words, so it somewhat helps to set a tone early on, I guess, but all he's doing is telling us exactly what's happening in a scene while it's happening. Like we don't get it.

Todd, that's what actors are for. We can see them experience these situations in dazzling Technicolor. Why would we want Will Lyman putting it into his own words for our benefit? Perhaps no scene boasts less compelling narration than the awkward dinner party, when Brad and Kathy invite Sarah and her lame ad exec husband Richard (Gregg Edelman) over for dinner. (Kathy suggests the meal on the pretense of their children's friendship, but she's obviously trying to figure out if Brad and Sarah are having sex.)

Kathy makes a sudden revelation and Connelly does a beautiful job of selling the moment. She doesn't say a word, but her eyes well up and she tenses and we in the audience, because we are human beings with fully functioning eyes and brains, can tell that she has figured something out that's upsetting to her. But Lyman's got to tell us all about it anyway. "All of the sudden, Kathy knew, and she felt..."

Bogus. Totally bogus. Repetitive, silly, completely uncinematic. It just pulls you right out of the moment and reminds you that you're watching a movie that would probably work better as a novel.

Field needs to trust his actors and his camera to tell the story. Simple as that.

I likewise say his film lacks confidence because his last act is a complete cop-out. Characters experience sudden changes of heart that not only stretch the limits of believability, but directly violate the logical sense of the film's first half. And it's not only that I doubt the likelihood of the outcome to Brad and Sarah's infidelity. It's that I think it's an ugly, mean-spirited and almost inhuman way to end the movie.

Without blowing too much, Field wants us to accept what his entire movie seems to argue against. For 120 minutes, he shows us characters struggling with negative urges who eventually lose the fight. It is inevitable, Little Children posits, that we will slowly give in to our base desires. Such is the life of a human being. Then his ending expects us to believe that the deserving characters can turn their urges on and off like a switch, can one night simply decide to be nice people and have their appetites permanently quenched. I call bullshit.

It's not that the movie has to have a bleak ending necessarily, although an all-around bleak movie like Little Children kind of paints itself into that corner. But Field begins the movie with a problem he has no interest in solving, doesn't solve anything and then pretends he has made a film with a happy ending. Too bad he hasn't. At least, I wasn't happy.

18 comments:

Audrey said...

You've entirely missed the point on both these films.

With "In the Bedroom" you write that Field is condoning an act of murder, when clearly the opposite is true.

With "Little Children" you write that Field has set out to make a film with a "happy ending." Well, I guess I was watching another film altogether. The ending felt like the rest of the film – melodramatic. This is what Perrotta and Field set out to accomplish. There is nothing happy about it. It is sloppy human behavior dramatized by the characters themselves.

You seem obviously, and I'm sorry to say, embarrassingly bent against Field, and it feels weirdly personal. You say that you have met him and that you find him to be a "tool." What do you mean by that exactly?

Also, for the record the actor who plays "Larry" is Noah Emmerich, not Toby Emmerich.

Lons said...

Well, you're correct about the Emmerich, but otherwise I disagree.

In "Bedroom," the murder is what allows the couple to remain together. They could not move on from the trauma of losing their son if the murderer remains alive.

And "Little Children" DOES have an attempt at a happy ending. I agree that the film didn't set out in this way (though I'm not certain it's a "melodrama" either, in the strict sense), but nonetheless that is where the story goes. It's an attempt at a REDEMPTIVE storyline, with the characters realizing their folly before it's too late.

My trouble with that is two-fold. Firstly, I don't think it's believable that these characters would give up on their newfound sense of freedom and the excitement of their affair so easily (I mean, because he goes skateboarding?) and I REALLY REALLY don't believe that Ronnie would do what he does at the end of the film.

Secondly, the notion that these characters SHOULD, in some moral sense, remain in their unsatisfying lives is just totally alien to me. Field seems, to my mind, biased towards the institution of marriage. He feels it suffers from some fundamental strains and flaws, but also feels that it is ultimately worth preserving, at nearly any cost. Or at least, the resolution to his films makes me think that is so.

And I'm sorry, but I've met him a few times and we didn't get along. I felt it necessary to mention it in the interest of full disclosure, but there are plenty of filmmakers whom I have met and not enjoyed personally but whose films I still admire. It's not very nice to show up on someone's blog and accuse them of being biased over something they readily admit to.

Anyway, thanks for the interesting post.

Anonymous said...

crushed by jealousy and ignorance is more like it. your comments are so glaringly rife with envy and misunderstanding, it's not really worth going into detail in response. suffice it to say that you are obviously an ignorant tool.

Lons said...

This is interesting...I write negative reviews all the time. Usually, if people leave negative comments, it's along the lines of..."Dude, you're wrong. This movie was great."

Yet, for this movie, both negative comments have gone after me in the form of personal attacks. And the weirdest part is, this is still a way more positive review than most of the ones I have written. I mean, I spend half the post praising the movie!

Look, people, I'm allowed to not enjoy a guy on a personal level, alright? And this is my personal blog, where I can discuss, personally, how I feel about people on a personal level. Get...the fuck...over it. I called the guy a tool, not The Great Satan.

And as for jealousy...How could I ever watch a movie if I was instantly jealous of any and all filmmakers? Or am I specifically jealous of Todd Field because he directs movies that I admire but don't fully, 100%, eagerly recommend.

Audrey said...

"Dude, you're wrong...both these movies were great!"

The ending of "In the Bedroom" has the character lying on his back with smoke coming out of his chest while from downstairs his wife screams "do you want coffee?" He has violated his own nature (he is a doctor) by killing another man. This is a gross case of overcompensation to "save" his marriage. Instead he has doomed himself, and his marriage to hell. What do you really think it will be like to live in that house going forward?

The ending of "Little Children" has two characters (Winslet & Wilson), whose afternoon flings have about as much substance as the back seat of a car, not wind up leaving their spouses to "run away" together. Winslet returns home. The last time we see her in the film she is lying in bed with her child – a child that she has actively ignored throughout the film. She is not back home and in bed with her husband. It is easy to imagine her packing up the next morning, leaving her husband, and beginning a meaningful relationship with the child. As for the Patrick Wilson character, what's so bad about his marriage? Other than the fact that he lies to his wife about everything: from studying for the bar exam, to joining a "concerned citizen's group" to having an affair. His wife as played by Jennifer Connelly seems like an infinitely patient woman, and someone worth keeping. As to why Wilson stops to skateboard at the end. Look at the character: he stops throughout the movie whenever he is called. Whether it is Sarah (hug me, kiss me) Larry (let's play football) or the skateboarder who finally acknowledges him.

You REALLY REALLY don't believe what Ronnie does at the end. Well, I can't argue with you there. I REALLY, REALLY DO BELIEVE what Ronnie does to himself at the end. This is a subjective medium. For example, have you ever known someone who committed suicide? Someone that you, and others who knew the person would never have imagined would do such a thing? But later when you found out about their very private, and personal story it all made sense? I have.

Who does Ronnie have in his life other than his mother?

As for your "personal" problems with Field. Under what circumstances did you meet the man? It sounds very traumatic.

Lons said...

Well, your point on "In the Bedroom" is well made. Perhaps I should rewatch the film.

I recall feeling confused as to why one murder was viewed sympathetically (Wilkinson kills with remorse and then experiences guilt) while another was seen as pretty much universally vile (the ex-husband is essentially a blank, save for his violent streak). As someone who opposes the death penalty and vigilante violence, I see pretty much all non-self-defense/wartime murders as roughly equal on the Evil-o-Meter. I mean, everything THINKS they have a good reason to kill, at the time.

As for "Little Children," a few responses in brief:

- I feel like Field would agree with your initial comment, that this is representation of "sloppy human behavior." I do not feel that individuals pursuing that which makes them happy is "sloppy," even if it interrupts an unhappy marriage. Whatever the problems with Wilson's marriage, it is no longer based on trust (his wife has her mother come into town to follow him around as a test) and clearly no longer physically intimate (he's extremely excited to get to have sex with his wife, and it doesn't happen anyway). In either case, Field's film passes some measure of judgement on him (his boredom with his marriage was a silly impulse, much like the desire of a grown man to skateboard) with which I did not agree.

- The Winslet character may very well leave her husband the next day, but this is hardly implied by the film. (If Field wanted to imply that Winslet left her husband, showing her asleep with their child in their bedroom probably wouldn't be the way to go.) I found her conclusion particularly creepy. She's suffering the entire film in this home with this man. Why would it be appropriate in any way for her to return to him? Are mothers not allowed any private lives as individuals? Must they subjugate all aspects of their personality to their role as wife and mother?

- As for the Ronnie character, not only do I not believe that he'd castrate himself but I disliked the way Field refused to adequately explore his deviant sexuality. Can you imagine Todd Solondz introducing a pedophilic character and then never showing him behaving inappropriately around children? The only taboo we ever see Ronnie violate is against a grown woman. It's a disturbing scene, sure, but we're still able to essentially empathize with his plight because we have not seen him dangerously transgress. He's a befuddled weirdo, not a dangerous sex offender. How much more challenging would it be for Field to make us care about Ronnie even after we have seen him act on his base impulses? This is what I mean when I say his film seems to lack conviction. If you want to make a film about a sympathetic pervert, you have to show him doing something perverse or it's a cop-out.

Audrey said...

Yes, Connelly has her mother come to town to “watch” Wilson. But only after her husband has proven that he needs to be watched. You might remember that earlier in the film, Connelly defends her husband while on the phone with her mother. She tells her mother that she believes that Wilson will pass the bar exam, and tells her mother to stay put and not to come for a “visit,” when the mother suggests that Wilson might be up to no good, “remember when your father took up golf.” Connelly is also in the position of having to take money from her mother, which cannot be too much fun for her. This couple has been together for at least 3 ½ years (the age of their son) and who is to say where and when the tension started between them? But Connelly’s character goes to work everyday and tries to do something with meaning: which certainly addresses your comment of “Are mothers not allowed any private lives as individuals? Must they subjugate all aspects of their personality to their role as wife and mother?” And yes, it appears that she and her husband are at a season in their marriage where things are not so regular in the sex department. But that doesn’t mean they have a failed marriage. They are lonely, and at different places emotionally, and developmentally. But are you saying that she is to blame. Because I don’t believe either is guilty of anything, other than trying to figure out who they are.

Why does Winslet go home with her daughter that night? Well, where else is she going to go with the child? To a hotel room? What would be the point of that? She takes the child home so that the little girl can wake up in her bed, and presumably Winslet’s character can sort herself out in the clear light of day. But you can’t honestly be trying to say that because she returns to the house that night with her daughter that she is going to, or that Field wants her to suddenly become Donna Reed and stay with that man. Because if you are…well, that is patently absurd.

As for Ronnie, I didn’t feel like he was portrayed as a “sympathetic pervert.” I felt like he was a desperate, pathetic character. I believed that he cared for his mother. I believed that she was central to his life. As for seeing him as a bona-fide “dangerous sex offender,” that was hardly the purpose for that character, and I felt like Perrotta & Field showed real courage in avoiding that cliché’. If you like that kind of thing you should go see Solondz’s brilliant “Happiness” or “The Woodsman.” Those films dissect quite well the make-up of a “dangerous sex offender.”

Lons said...

Audrey, I greatly appreciate your interest and enthusiasm in the review here, but I feel we're at an impasse in this particular discussion. We just have different takes on the intent and subtext of this film.

For example, I don't believe that Kathy is "to blame" for the marital strife between her and Richard, nor that their problems could not be overcome with time, counseling or whatever. I'm just saying that the ending to this particular storyline feels forced - the notion that all of these bottled-up emotions and frustrations that Brad has experienced, not to mention his chronic lies and infidelities over the course of more than a month, could be exorcized through a skateboarding accident is trite at best.

And that I feel like Field romanticizes the notion of a married couple over the notion of an individual. That people are more complete or whole or whatever when they are united by law, and that this unity should be strived for above all other pursuits or passions.

Also, I find it hard to believe that you never once emotionally connected with Ronnie, who I found to be a largely sympathetic and nuanced character. Perhaps more so than Richard, Sarah's husband about whom we know nothing than his profession and his tastes in onanism.

But you are free to disagree without either of us being wrong or ignorant, I would hope. I don't really ENJOY people coming here and telling me I am ignorant, as film is pretty much the only topic on Earth about which I do not feel ignorant, but hey, such is the life of a blogger.

I just don't know where the discussion could really progress from here. I can't really counter-argue your points because they all could very well be true and you make them with forceful vigor.

Audrey said...

Yes, I make them with such “forceful vigor” because it is painful to see your overly generalized remarks in regard to this film.

Your comment that the film is “romanticizing marriage” is ridiculous. Wilson gets into a skateboarding accident and, like a child, calls home to “mommy.” Does this mean that his marriage will be instantly healed? Who can say? You seem inclined to interpret film in a moralistic way, and to possess some desire for a literal and spoon-fed ending, as if there is some lesson in it. This is not what the film is about. We all bring our own shit to films, and you appear particularly sensitive to the rights of the individual as opposed to marriage, as if the two were mutually exclusive…ok. But what on earth does this have to do with anything other than your bias?

I don't recall ever calling you ignorant. But I do think you are wrong-headed about this film, and for reasons that have nothing to do with the piece itself.

Take care of yourself.

Lons said...

Yes, we bring "our own shit" to films, but to deny that this film has a perspective on marriage is to take a pretty simplified view. I'm interpreting Field's opinions on some issues based on the films he has made. Now, you can disagree with my opinion, obviously, but you've thus far offered no evidence so compelling for your side that I'm convinced my original review was generalized or wrong headed.

All you've done is denied there's any subtext to the film whatsoever.

These are events that happened. They are ambiguous. They have no larger context beyond their truth to the characters represented. If I thought that were true, I'd consider it a worse review of the film than the one I initially offered.

Lons said...

And, obviously, there is conflict when considering the rights of the individual vs. the rights of a married couple. This tension is what the film is about, largely. Can individuals sublimate their own personal desires to the needs of a cohesive family unit? Are you denying this?

Audrey said...

I have addressed your generalizations about this film in the most specific way possible.
I am not "denying" there is a perspective on marriage. The question is whose perspective?

You state yours in the most surface and oversimplified way possible with no "subtext" whatsoever:

"And that I feel like Field romanticizes the notion of a married couple over the notion of an individual. That people are more complete or whole or whatever when they are united by law, and that this unity should be strived for above all other pursuits or passions."

This is a very black & white interpretation. Where is your "subtext," your analysis?

You are simply chasing your tail, and you know it.

Lons said...

Personally, I feel like you lost the argument right away by delving almost exclusively into personal attacks on me. Rather than concoct your own analysis of the movie, discussing what YOU felt was going on in the film, you have contented yourself to tear down my arguments and suggestions. That's fine, but it doesn't exactly establish your perspective. Honestly, re-reading your comments, I have no idea abotu your take on the film. Just that you think my take is shallow and wrong-headed and that I am a simpleton.

You must understand that your arguments could be made about any analysis of any film ever. I mean, all films have perspectives, but those perspectives can only be interpreted by...wait for it...OTHER PEOPLE who have perspectives of their own. This doesn't invalidate a viewer's reaction. It's the entire point of making a film and showing it to a viewer. This also means that no one interpretation of a film is concrete and set. I invite others to make their own interpretations, but you have not. You have just torn mine down without replacing it with anything else. You restate over and over again that I make "generalizations" and that I'm "wrong-headed," but what does that mean? Do you genuinely object to my reasoning, or do you just disagree? And if you just disagree, why not have a civil, interesting discussion rather than continually baiting me into an argument?

I mean, after 12 comments without establishing any of your own original ideas about the movie (aside from that it's about "sloppy behavior"), you have the temerity to come back and scold ME for not discussing the film's subtext or making an analysis? I mean, what have we been discussing for 12 comments if not my analysis?

It's almost like you don't know what words mean. When I say that Field romanticizes the notion of marriage, how is that black-or-white? It's just a suggestion based on the film. You can disagree, but to suggest that my thinking is "black or white" on that subject is all but meaningless. Seriously. I'd like to respond but your argument doesn't make rational sense.

Audrey said...

Like you, I have reread our exchanges, and I have come to the following conclusions:

Your thesis is an argument that the film is inauthentic, "bullshit," as you so eloquently state. You do not like or believe what it "says."

As a person who disagrees with your thesis, the only "argument" (discussion, debate, whatever) to have with you is to address your reasoning point by point. This I have consistently, and faithfully done.

If you don't want an honest give and take about your ideas, then you shouldn't publish them in such a public way.

You seem insulted that I don't agree with you. How can we have an honest to goodness discussion when you are such a sensitive soul?

You state "I write negative reviews all the time." Well, then you might want to remember that "negative" is a two-way street.

You refer to "personal attacks." I have not personally attacked you. I don't even know you.

The only personal attack I can see is the one you have made on the “tool” Todd Field.

Lons said...

I'm thinking this will be my last comment on this subject. If you'd like to continue to post, feel free. I'm happy to give you the last word if you so desire.

Here's what I would consider the thesis of my post:

"It's not a bad film by any stretch. I rather enjoyed watching it, actually. But Field on some level seems to lack confidence in his own ability. For a guy whose movies can come off as pretentious, it's strange to likewise feel that he's holding back and selling himself short. But here we are."

Nowhere do I use the term "bullshit" or call the film "inauthentic." I use those terms, but I actually say a lot of postiive things about the film as well. I'd say it's a mixed review as opposed to a slam. This statement comes closest, I believe, to summing up the essential "point of the post."

I am not insulted that we disagree. I am insulted because of your constant, sneering tone of self-satisfaction, implying that I have nothing of interest to say. (Quite nonsensically, this is in spite of the fact that you have repeatedly visited and revisited my blog over the course of the past several days.)

And if you think coming back here again and again to repeat that my reasoning is "oversimplified" and that my referring to Todd Field as a tool is inappropriate constitutes an honest and thorough response to my initial review...well, all I can say is, you may want to read that review again. You haven't really responded to ANYTHING I said substantively except for your comments about "In the Bedroom," which I noted immediately as succinct and accurate. Nor did you offer your own perspective on the film. Just that I am wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong about everything.

Audrey said...

The word – inauthentic – was not in quotes in my last post. But there are quotes accurately book-ending the word "bullshit."

In your initial review you write:
“Then his ending expects us to believe that the deserving characters can turn their urges on and off like a switch, can one night simply decide to be nice people and have their appetites permanently quenched. I call bullshit.”

In your latest post you write: "Nowhere do I use the term "bullshit" or call the film "inauthentic."

And then in the very next sentence you contradict yourself: "I use those terms, but I actually say a lot of positive things about the film as well."

There, you have the last word.

Happy?

Anonymous said...

Okay so Field is another gay man who hates marriage and the eternally maligned "suburbia." (UH is there any neighborhood out there that isn't "suburbia?") Or another Hollywood hater of the "bourgeoisie." (Sort of like the creators of "Desperate Housewives.")

I always think of how odd it is that Winslet stars in these massochistic films that equate marriage and family (No matter how comfortably off) with a new level of hell (Think the pathetic and crazy malcontent "Revolutionary Road")while at the same time she rants and raves about the joys of motherhood in her own life. As Gabrielle of DH reminds a girl scout come to sell her cookies, there's no happy ending or domestic bliss. Hollywood has such an agenda to push this feminist misery on girls.

I just wish Field would stop pushing his neurosis on everyone else.

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