Thursday, September 29, 2005

Garden State

Starring: Zach Braff, Natalie Portman

Garden State is a pleasant, quirky movie, with (surprisingly) a formulaic ending. Better movies than this have been made and will continue to be made, and better actresses than Natalie Portman (or at least those with less distracting teeth) may have converted this into a greater movie, but that does not detract from Braff and Portman's reasonable chemistry, and the overall pleasantness of the movie (which I mentioned before).

(Warning: spoilers below.)

GS follows Andrew Largeman (Zach Braff), an actor-waiter with an iffy career in both acting and waiting, whose only big role was playing a retarded quarterback, as he goes back home to SmallTown, New Jersey. GS isn't sure he likes his family or if he wants to be back, but he learns to overcome past problems.

Samantha (Natalie Portman), whom he meets in a neurologist's waiting room while being dry humped by a dog, is the obligatory love interest who teaches him to live life. Then Zach has to go back home to California. And there follows a formulaic ending, which those of you who watched the Friends finale will doubtless be able to guess.


Blogger Falstaff said...

Just for the record, I totally disagree. Garden State is one long, meandering yawn of a movie. It's actually more boring than New Jersey.

Portman couldn't act if her make-up depended on it, and Braff looks like he's still waiting for the script to reach him. Oh, it's pleasant enough, the way a fluffy down pillow is pleasant, but it's also so mindnumbingly predictable that watching beer ads would probably be more stimulating. If you've ever seen any movie that involved young people finding their identity while falling in love, you've already seen Garden State. So don't bother.

As for the ending - you'll have to take Speck 42's word for that - I didn't stay awake that long.

8:48 AM  
Blogger Speck 42 said...

Portman is quite irritating, isn't she? However Braff's wooden expression fit the character's numbed-by-psychoactive-drugs profile quite well, so I have to disagree on that count.

12:48 PM  
Blogger DoZ said...

Agree with falstaff. Found the movie quite boring, and the humor juvenile. Watched it in a movie hall surrounded by people, all of whom apparently really enjoyed the movie - there was repeated & widespread laughing out loud. Tried to make sense of it & gave up, concluding that this was one of those "American" things that only the natives get.

12:32 AM  

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