Thursday, May 13, 2010

An unexpected observation

Beginning his review of Letters to Juliet, Roger Ebert surprised me with this declaration.

"I know “Letters to Juliet” is a soppy melodrama, and I don’t mind in the least. I know the ending is preordained from the setup. I know the characters are broad and comforting stereotypes. In this case, I simply don’t care. Sometimes we have personal reasons for responding to a film."

He goes on to explain his connection to the Redgraves, memories of Verona and Juliet's Balcony, the set of Camelot and myriad reasons this movie was so evocative for him.

It's not a movie I plan to see, but what was important to me was reading his review. And, in particular, this closing thought.

"I also want to observe that our response to every film depends on the person we bring to it. Pauline Kael said she went to a movie, and the movie happened, and she wrote about what changed within her after she saw it. This is quite valid. Sometimes, however, we go to a movie, and our lives have happened, and we write about what hasn’t changed."

Juliet's Balcony courtesy of coop91 at flickr.

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