Su wondered what I thought of this movie, so I thought I’d attempt a brief review. Perhaps more of a rant. I really liked this movie, it had great energy, and I’m a sucker for a good newspaper flick. But it acted on me like a drug – really great high, but lasting only a flash, and then I was a bit hung over. I had dinner with friends after I saw it, and I was restless, anxious; I did dishes, I couldn’t sit down. Maybe that was the popcorn – I wish I did dishes at home when I was hung over! Okay, too caught up in metaphors now.
I’m so over the grizzled, sloppy, married-to-his-job guy who can’t bother to tuck in his shirt and listens to loud Irish music on his 20-year-old car radio. This movie was pretty, a wonderful cast, great setting. But it was all froth, tropes I’ve seen a million times before and mostly no longer believe in (note the bitterness about the Irish music in the old car). I’m even over the death of the newspaper industry, having cancelled my Muskegon Chronicle subscription last month. Being a survivor of the newspaper strike in Detroit in the 90s, it’s surprising it took me so long to stop caring – I mean, I care about the writers and press workers who are losing their jobs, but I’m tired of romanticizing professions that were really all about the money, all along.
The only saving grace is that the protagonist played by Russell Crowe didn’t sleep with the younger, better-dressed colleague played by Rachel McAdams; but then, he had already had an off-screen affair with the old college friend, played by Robin Wright Penn.
I love Helen Mirren; she was worth the price of admission, not to mention my if-I-had-a-celebrity-boyfriend, Ben Affleck (it was a facebook quiz, sorry if that made no sense to those of you not on facebook yet). I suppose she represented those difficult choices we make because we have mortgages, and I do have sympathy for that. I disliked the boyfriend character in The Devil Wears Prada because I thought he was unsympathetic to Ann Hathaway’s character’s desire to please her boss, to succeed in her job, even if she wasn’t in love with the job in the first place. Many good people are caught in the middle of the huge changes in the newspaper industry. I wish this movie had dealt more clearly and originally with those changes, instead of creating a fantasy about an era that was gone before I was out of college.