I've been meaning to post about a movie for WEEKS and keep forgetting. "Once," that beautiful, wonderful, heart-breaking movie that came out... in 2006. I know, I'm always behind on this stuff. (I can raise a family, or I can stay current. I can't do both.) I've got the soundtrack under the cut and LOTS OF SPOILERS. If you've not seen it, DO NOT READ. It's such a lovely, quiet movie, you should go in fresh.
I've had this sitting on my counter from Netflix for months. It being described as a "modern-day musical" was keeping me from sticking it in the DVD player. It's nothing like a "musical," it just has organic musical performances, ones that laid me low. Marketa listening on headphones and singing a song while walking in her neighborhood in jammies? Absolutely fantastic moment. (And haha, I'm so trained by Hollywood, I kept waiting for a robber to come out. THANKS, MGM.) And the sound guy in the recording studio expecting them to suck, but being pleasantly surprised by their talent was another terrific moment.
At first I was disappointed at the unrequited love, but that's because I came to care so much for these two people. I love love LOVE how it ends, him sending her a piano, her composing songs and thinking of him, but grounded in her life. That, uh, that hit me in the gut, which is possibly why I didn't like the ending at first reaction. :) From a movie creation angle, I appreciated how organically the movie grew. How natural everyone was (because half of the time, Glen and Marketa didn't have cameras in their faces: the director hid behind stuff and used a long angle camera.) I loved that a lot of this movie was ad libbed, too - didn't it just feel like you were watching two people? Beautiful.
And on a romantic note, oh my heart! This movie hits so many of my romantic loves. Trivia: they actually hooked up, these two. <3 Also, Glen didn't know that Marketa replied "I love you" in Czech when he asks her if she still loves her husband. I loev that they didn't subtitle that comment, either. The songs are so wonderfully woven in to the movie's frame work, too, as their romance grows (unrequited, nonetheless) the songs deal with their growing feelings, and the growing conflict of the other people in their lives, as well.
How refreshing that "The Girl" gets huffy when he asks her to stay the night. And he looks so surprised and upset with himself when he realizes how ungentlemanly that was. <3 I love that she never lets him forget that she's a mother. And that her mother will come with her, because she looks after her baby. Real real real. I love "The Guy's" holey sweaters, the big gaping hole in his guitar from strumming so hard. Her man's jacket and frumpy clothes. Her adorable accent and inability to make a "th" sound so it comes out "mudder" and "udder." Oh and my heart broke for her singing her song about missing her husband and being conflicted with new emotions for "The Guy" while playing on the piano late at night in the recording studio. Her voice is so lovely. And my god, she's a KID. She was 19 when they made this? Wow.
I ached for days after seeing this movie. Can't recommend it enough. Keep in mind it's a quiet, soft, intimate movie. Don't go in expecting Atonement, or something grandiose.
Here's the soundtrack.
And because I laughed at it, this is a clip from the AFI festival, it's the director and writer (my bro-in-law) dressed as vampires protesting Blood on the Highway for "misrepresentation of vampires." "Dangit, Clark! You just set us back 1000 years! Go call your sponsor!" Vampires having regular guy names is always funny to me. (On my honor, it's not an April Fool's joke. It's also work safe.)
Has anyone read "A Final Solution" by Michael Chabon? Hmmm. Overall I was pretty "meh" about it. I did like the chapter from the parrot's perspective. I'm reading Phillip Roth and "World War Z" right now. To say those are polar opposites is not stretching the truth.... Alright, enough random stuff from me. Tell me stories, talk to me about books, keep me from having to do laundry and mop!!