Movie: Notting Hill
Starring: Julia Roberts
and Hugh Grant
Director: Roger Michell
Writer: Richard Curtis
Producer: Duncan Kenworthy, Eric Fellner
"Wow" is basically the word for this beautifully
done, and extremely stylish film. One of the most creative
plots I've seen, Julia Roberts is Anna Scott; the both successful
and beautiful American movie star. She's basically
exploited at every chance the press gets; in other words,
her picture (clothed or nude) is plastered over every
tabloid, newspaper, and even the town bus. On the other
side of earth, lives William Thacker (Hugh Grant). He's basically
a down to earth salesman/owner who sells travel books in a store
which isn't doing too... "oopsie-daysies" good. Furthermore,
his roomate's a walking moron, his wife left him for another
man, and he's honestly a lonely guy. However, all that
changes, when Anna Scott, the world's biggest star happens
to stroll right into his little shop. If this wasn't
enough to arouse excitement, he later just happens to bump
into her once again, and spills orange juice all over her
white shirt. And through all this, they're thinking about
everything, except love.
It's really amazing how little credit I gave these two
talents (Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant) before walking
into the theatre. Personally, I didn't really expect
too much since I've never seen the two of them as an
on screen duo before. Nevertheless, I walked out with the
upmost respect a movie reviewer can give two members of
the acting community. Their preformances were not only
above and beyond all expectations, but they actually went
to England, America, and back to England again....
(That was SUPPOSED to be a joke...) My only
criticism of the entire film, is that at times, things
weren't always... clear in a sense as in "WHY did that
just happen? That can't just happen..." For instance,
the circumstances of their first kiss (so not to give
anything away) is a bit... odd. But overall, it
was undeniably clever, they're execution of dialogue was
infaliable, and the movie's style was simply charming!
Beginning with Julia Roberts, I must say that lately,
her films have been at the highest standard of film making.
In "My Best Friend's Wedding," her talent was exposed to
the world. Once again, we saw her ability to appeal
to all ages, people, and types of film. She was breathtaking.
With "Step Mom," her acting talent was only re-enforced if not
made greater. Now, with "Notting Hill," it seems as if we've
finally gotten a "diva of film"; something that's been missing
since the days of Elizabeth Taylor, and Audrey Hepburn.
In Roberts' role as Anna Scott, she really makes the
audience feel for her, and almost helps the public to
realize how hard the life of a star can be. Furthermore,
her portrayal was just divine. While many might say that
she was "just being her-self" since she really is a hollywood
star, the fact that she can take her life, and dispaly it
so openly, effectively, and emotionally, is breathtaking.
Near the end of the film, in a beautifully directed scene,
she tries to reconcile her relationship with Mr. Thacker.
In pain, and love, she says "I'm just a girl, standing in
front of a boy, asking him to love her..."
While this line can be easily executed in a cheesy, corny
way, she says it in such a sweet manner, that it sounds
sincere, clever, and unbelievably touching. While the
Academy Awards seldom recognizes romantic comedies unless
it has something to do with Shakespeare, the Holocaust, or
some other historically artistic event, truthfully, I wouldn't
be surprised at all if we saw "Julia Roberts" on the
nominees list. Nevertheless, if she doesn't make it this
year, no fret; we'll see her claim her award sometime
down the line.
Moving on to Hugh Grant.... I walked into the
theatre with somewhat mixed emotions. I saw him, the
actor, and all the talent he posseses; which is great talent.
But ironically, he's known for the publicity he's recieved,
not through acting, but through a different kind of...
"thing" from his early adult life. However, with the new prespective gained
from this film, the general public will definately be
challenged to reconsider their feelings towards him,
not only as an actor, but as an individual.
Furthermore, his character was simply
so sweet and it was done so nicely that the past
just seems to fade away. Undeniably, he's a great actor;
there's not doubt about that. In portraying William
Thacker, his ability to create this vivid character who's
so insignificant, yet sweet, so lonely, yet able, is
really breathtaking. In his future, this english actor,
definately has great potential; and while his co-star
already has the magnitude of fame which she portrays in
Anna Stokes, Grant's acting ability and fame is definately
on the rise.
With the level of acting which was
put into the film, it convinces people to think twice before
judging an actor or actress based on something they've
done in their private lives. It also presents the challenge to feel
more compassion when seeing the media exploit these
professionals for every little mistake, every tiny stumble
they make. That's pretty powerful stuff.
It was extrememly powerful acting.
However, let us NOT neglect the excellent writing and
directing as well! The ensemble of the film was just
perfect as every scene was beautifully edited, and directed.
The general atmosphere of the film, furthermore, was
completely charming. From non-stop laughing, to an
honest feeling experience, this flicks "surreal, but nice."
The supporting cast as well, did an excellent job in adding
to the film, and providing comical relief.
While I could usually go on writing jargon for hours, all
that I can further say, all that is really left to say,
is Bravo! Bravo to the director, bravo to the writer, and
of course, bravo to the actors.