Friday, October 9, 2009

A Movie a Day: All the Real Girls (David Gordon Green, 2003)

After seeing this movie, I couldn't shake it. I had some major problems with it, even while watching it, but there was no question that it hit me in a very specific way. All I could do afterwards was throw on a little Gaslight Anthem, a little Bruce Springsteen, and just wallow in this near-despair-on-the-verge-of-awe the film left me in.

Good melodrama does this to you. It also makes you feel totally ashamed of this reaction down the line, to the extent that you'll sort of question if the piece was really all that good. The reaction seemed so momentary, so fleeting, so how important was the film really if that's the case?

Quite a bit, I'd argue. Green's film is one of the most outlandish modern melodramas I've ever seen, wearing its every emotion and whim on the screen. It's the whims that tend to bother me the most, and for the most part, I don't buy these characters saying a lot of the things they do (although I do admire the way they say them - either in his direction or writing, Green really knows how people talk, saying the opposite of what they mean or doubling back to correct themselves). But I do buy that what they're saying is essential to them, and this is some magical world where they would express that. That's melodrama, I suppose.

It's an important statement on love, the way we express it, and the ways we accept it, or don't. That's worth having.

1 comment:

Ben said...

currently a Jenn pick at Madness