Jesse and I saw Freedom Writers and The Holiday today (Sunday), both at the Grove. A few thoughts:
--Before I saw it, I’d been jokingly referring to Freedom Writers as “Dangerous Minds 2,” but it’s so much better than that. Honestly.
--Freedom Writers made me cry about ten times (again, no joke) (my neck was wet, that’s how much the movie made me cry), and I realize that I substitute teach at an incredibly affluent high school, but I still identified with Hilary Swank and all of her travails.
--They totally wasted Patrick Dempsey. Even though it’s kinda refreshing to see a man wasted in the typical “girlfriend” role, I love me some Dempsey and all of his scenes could have been cut from the film and the plot would not have been affected in the least (except it would be tighter and I might have cried even more than I did)
--one of my favorite scenes was the “step to the line” scene. If you’ve seen the movie (and you probably haven’t), then you know what I’m talking about. (Or, maybe you HAVE seen the movie—after all, I tried to see it twice this weekend, but was thwarted the first time I tried to see it because it was sold out, and it was pretty packed the second time I [successfully] tried to see it, which was this afternoon.)
--One thing that bugged me (and this is a minor thing) (but I kept noticing it) was that it felt like Hilary Swank only taught one class. I realize that they only focused on one group of students so we could get to know them and love them (which we did), but you’d think there would be some sense that she also had five other classes that filled up her day. I don’t know why I got so fixated on that, but it kept nagging at me.
--There were a lot of good criers in the movie. But my favorite crier in the history of criers is Claire Danes. Seriously. I’ve never seen an actor cry better than her. Sometimes, when she cries, her chin twitches a little bit, and it always kills me. (See Little Women, Shopgirl, or the My So-Called Life pilot episode for evidence.)
--Hunter Parrish, the dude who plays the older brother on Weeds, is in Freedom Writers, but he looks soooooo much younger in Freedom Writers and I wanna know: did they make this movie five hundred years ago, or did he just wear “younger” clothes, and that’s why I think he looks like he’s thirteen (when he’s twenty in real life).
--There are so many attractive people at the Grove.
--I really hated the first hour of The Holiday—I even asked Jesse if we could leave, but he wouldn’t let me—and then, somehow, the movie won me over and I started enjoying myself. I don’t have much else to say about it, except to mention that the fire alarm went off towards the end of the movie and the lights came on and a voice came over a loud speaker announcing that we were being evacuated and to calmly leave the theater and how sad is it that my first thought was, “what if this is the end of the world?” (Um, can we say drama king?) So they evacuated the theater and thousands of people calmly walked out into the fakosity of Grove Street, and we people watched for a while. Because, like I said, there are so many attractive people at the Grove it’s ridiculous. And then Famke Janssen ran past us, obviously annoyed that she’d had to leave whatever movie she’d been watching. And then a fire truck appeared and who knew how long we would have to wait for them to let us back into the movie theater, if they ever even would let us back in, and we had to leave soon because we were running late for a birthday party we were planning on going to after the movies—so, finally, as much as we wanted to know whether or not Kate and Jack and Jude and Cameron all got together in the end, we decided to leave. But then when we got up to the top of the parking structure, we looked back over the ledge and noticed that they were letting the throng of dejected movie-watchers back into the movie theater to resume their movie-watching, and then we were like: um, we have to run back down there and see the end, so we ran back to the elevator, and we raced through the crowd, and we got back to the theater just as the movie was starting back up, and then…the credits started to roll. Okay, actually there was about 90 seconds worth of movie left to watch, AND THEN the credits started to roll. But still—it felt kinda ridiculous to run like crazy back to the movie theater just so we could see a mere 90 seconds of movie, but we needed closure.