Friday, January 05, 2007


The Holiday Vs. Rocky Balboa

We went to see two movies recently. The Holiday was one Miss Tori had been looking forward to for a while. I don't know if I was dying to see it, but she wanted to see it and I like Jack Black, so what the heck. Plus, I wanted to see Rocky Balboa, and I thought seeing this might help persuade Miss Tori to go to that.

I can't believe I'm saying this, but I am very pleasantly surprised to say that I was very pleasantly surprised by The Holiday, and Miss Tori was extremely surprised at how much she liked Rocky Balboa.

The Holiday is the story of two women who are unlucky in love. To get a little space and clear their heads, they end up trading houses for two weeks, with journalist Kate Winslett coming to Los Angeles and movie trailer maker Cameron Diaz going to the English countryside. Winslett's Iris has been hanging on to love for a man who has cheated on her, left her for another woman, and is now engaged to that woman. Somehow, Iris just can't let him go.

As Amanda, Diaz just wants to go somewhere without men, and Surrey sounds perfect, until Iris' brother stops by after a night at the pub to sleep it off at his sister's house. Meanwhile, Iris has met a score composer (Jack Black) who seems sweet, but is already in a relationship. She ends up devoting her time to a ninety year old screenwriter, learning about the old days in Hollywood and learning a little bit about what a classy guy, and true love, are all about. When Black's relationship goes sour, Iris finally gets a clear and objective look at what a doormat she's been for the past three years.

The film continues, back and forth across the Atlantic, with laughs and heartfelt moments along the way. If you're a "beautiful person" you probably won't appreciate this movie. If you're any kind of real human being who's encountered any of the ups and downs of love, this movie will resonate,and perhaps even bring a tear or two before it's all over. Read other reviews here.

And in this corner . . . Rocky Bal-Bo-a!

I'm going to the Patron's 60th birthday party tomorrow, and after hearing him ridicule the very idea of another Rocky movie, it is my personal mission to convince him to see it.

You may have heard that sequels are almost never as good as the originals. Yes, but not this time. You may have heard that after Rocky II, it all went downhill. Yes, but not this time. You may have heard that Stallone couldn't act his way out of a community theater. Yes, but not this time. You may have heard that this could be the surprise movie of the year. Yes.

In this movie, Rocky has gotten older. His son is in his twenties, working at some finance type job and a little sick of the old man's shadow following him everywhere he goes in Philadelphia. Rocky is running a restaraunt called Adrian's, in honor of his now deceased wife, and he is haunted by her memory. Paulie, well, he's still Paulie, crusty as ever and guilty about how he treated Adrian. We also meet Marie, a woman who met Rocky once when she was a little girl. She's had a hard life and is raising a teenage son on her own.

The boxing? Forget it. That's just the scenery. You're watching a movie about human relationships, how people deal with loss and hurt and pain. Yes there is a big fight at the end, but the outcome of the fight is secondary to the lessons of the film.

This film is also family friendly. The violence is minimal, especially by today's standards, and even the boxing scenes are cut to minimize any graphic imagery. Believe it or not, you might shed a tear or two when you see this one as well. Read other reviews here.

At the end, this review is a split decision. If you have to choose only one of these movies, the slight edge has to go to Rocky Balboa.
Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?