To Blog or not To Blog
Various rantings, thoughts and points of view from a 29 yr old father living in Canberra.
Friday, April 01, 2005
Movie Review - Million Dollar Baby
After my initial plan to see all the Best Picture Nominiated movies before the Oscars failed, and then the movie that I least wanted to see, won, I was a bit disillusioned by it all and haven't seen a movie in ages.
That was until my sister called me at 7.30 last night to say that she had some Hoyts Cash to use before the end of March. She had 3 tickets and had called all her single friends, so she tried to see if Fee or I would go. They wanted to see Million Dollar Baby and Fee wasn't too fussed in seeing it so I decided to snaffle the freebie.
I wasn't expecting too much from this movie. I mean, sure, it won best picture, but so did Chicago, and Shakespeare in Love....
The first thing I noticed, and liked about this film was that the narrative was done by Morgan Freeman. He has such a awesome voice. Although so low pitched that sometimes it's a little hard to understand. But that voice always takes me back to The Shawshank Redemption, and that's a good thing.
The second thing I noticed was that Clint Eastwood, was..Clint Eastwood. Nothing more. Nothing less. Unfortuantely his acting role in this movie is not very outstanding and not much of a stretch for him. In fact I don't think any of the roles in this movie really stretched the actor very far.
Sure, Hillary Swank played the trailer park trash well, but it was easy (very easy) for her to do. Morgan Freeman played the old man who observes lots of things well, but that's what he does.
So, ignoring the performances, I listened and got the feel for the script and the scenery.
Now, let's also ignore the fact that Belconnen Hoyts is probably the shittest movie cinemas I have ever been to. The picture was slightly blurry for the whole screening, and the seats in Cinema 9 are just woeful (I hear they are upgrading though..) Besides the blurriness, the cinematography was nice. I always had a slight feel of nostalgia, which seems to come with any boxing movie. Or maybe it's just because it's a Clint movie. The 'Hit Pit', which Clint's character, 'Frankie' owns is your typical old style boxing gym with all the bags, skipping ropes, rings and dust that you'd want. It set the scene nicely though.
The screenplay was well written. It wasn't challenging by any means, but the banter between Clint and Morgan's characters was entertaining, and Swank's character was very likeable. There was enough humour in it to keep you smiling as well, which is always good.
Without giving away any plot-lines, I have to say that this movie, although containing a twist, was predictably hollywood and very slick in production. This is what probably gave it the Best Picture nod. There are no real surprises here. The storyline travelled along at a meandering pace without really hitting top gear at all, and the actors gave performances that were also mediocre, but good enough for the pace of the movie.
To be honest, I don't think it should have beaten 'The Aviator' or 'Finding Neverland' to Best Picture, but that's just me.
It's not a movie that will really stick with you for too long I don't think. It's a 'see and forget' sort of movie that you'll like at the time, but you won't go watching over and over again.
3 1/2 celestial bodies of hot gas.
Graphics and design by Ann Stretton 2001