Added: Morrell Bisbee - Date: 01.05.2022 11:44 - Views: 11268 - Clicks: 6795
This movie is the clearest case I've seen in a long time of the war between movie stars and the scripts they are given. The movie is a love story. The stars are Robert De Niro and Meryl Streep -- arguably the two most distinguished American movie actors under fifty. They have a genuine chemistry together on the screen and undeniable charisma. It wants to be a s romance, and it makes that bountifully clear by making the first encounter between the characters a "Meet Cute.
Would you believe that is exactly how the "Meet Cute" works in this movie? De Niro and Streep are at a bookstore, not a department store, but as their packages drop, the movie almost could use a subtitle with the cross-reference to other films. I'm sure there was some sort of story conference about how it would be fun to reprise a classic Meet Cute.
I'm sure they had a lot of story conferences on this movie, giving one another pep talks about how the movie's total lack of substance was really a style decision. But it's just a cop-out. How can you put Streep and De Niro in a movie and not give them characters to play or interesting things to say? It's a waste of resources. The movie's story involves two people who commute to New York on the same train. After their "Meet Cute," they are attracted to each other by instant chemistry. They meet again. There is a little awkward conversational jostling, and before long they're embarked on a chaste year-long affair in which they have lunch, go to Chinatown, visit tall buildings and trendy art galleries, and find mutual support while Streep's father dies.
Art galleries and Chinatown are almost obligatory in movies like this. All true love affairs must begin with a mutual return to the infantile, as the lovestruck new partners buy hot dogs from vendors and watch the ice skating in Rockefeller Center and in other ways symbolically reenact the necessity of reliving their entire lives, from childhood on, in the company of this treasured new person.
Except that in all romances worthy of the name, there sooner or later comes a meeting of the minds: There are those rushed, excited conversations in which the two lovers realize that they are both brilliant, both insightful, both witty, and both sharing a viewpoint so unique that the rest of the world will never quite understand it. The dialogue is unremittingly, perhaps deliberately, banal. The funniest line in the movie "How much do you weigh?
We learn nothing of substance about them. They are provided with spouses who are ciphers, with personalities that are shallow and narcissistic, with crises that depend upon a manipulative script. And as if all of that were not bad enough, the movie also resorts to Idiot Plot techniques to squeeze out an infuriating ending. A final farewell between the lovers is prevented because of faulty communications. A later reunion takes place when there is only one fact that each lover needs to know -- that the other is separated or divorced.
Incredibly, neither character makes this revelation, because to supply that single essential fact would spoil "Falling in Love"'s manipulative and shameless ending. Incredibly, there are passages when this movie works. They are entirely due to the chemistry, the genuine human qualities of Streep and De Niro.
They carry the plot and the dimwit dialogue because of the goodwill they've built up with us, and because of their own magnetism, their ability to invest worthless dialogue with a certain personal charm. Roger Ebert was the film critic of the Chicago Sun-Times from until his death in In , he won the Pulitzer Prize for distinguished criticism. Reviews Falling in Love. Roger Ebert January 01, Now streaming on:. Powered by JustWatch. Now playing. Algren Peter Sobczynski. Anne at 13, ft Peter Sobczynski. Falling for Figaro Roxana Hadadi.
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