Rick’s Journal  —  MY FILM CAREER

The journal entries of my blog are offerings of mullings and reflections and questions too personal to be posted as reviews or analyses. This is especially the case here as I wander and wonder through 12 years of Boyhood.

Richard Linklater

I don’t find these people interesting enough to follow them through twelve years.  I see nothing unusual or original in their problems or motivations or confrontations.  If this is the point  —  If I am missing the point  —  If the point is how typical this boyhood is, I don’t grasp any unique viewpoint or angle in the writing or directing.

Despite the presence of some excellent professional players, the film does convey a vivid but never showy sense of reality.  I felt at times that I was watching a documentary, watching at the least a neorealist drama, as if good actors were perhaps improvising.  (WAS there any improvisation?)  I like the character played by Lorelei Linklater, and she plays it well.  Patricia Arquette is good; but Ethan Hawke is especially believable and the film sparkles each time he enters, as does the life of his kids whenever he returns to them.

I would like to know why the parents had divorced.  Was it because the father, at that time, could not grow up?  I would like to know why the kids do not tell him, the real father whom they trusted, about the scary drinking and emotional abuse and physical violence of the stepfather.  I would like to know if mother decides about her third husband what the boy Mason and we the audience have decided.

Am I asking for the very specifics Linklater wanted not to address?  Are my questions betraying his labor of love  —  his and that of many others?  —  I would enjoy responses from my readers.

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In the current winter issue of Notre Dame Magazine David Shribman, editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette publishes his list of “Top 10 American Movies.”  His list includes Gone with the Wind; and while I am always pleased to find Vivien Leigh listed first in the cast, I am chagrined by the usual pain of seeing her name misspelled.  E, folks as in Vivien, not A as in Vivian.

The film in the number one spot on his list is Knute Rockne, , All American.

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The small “Rewind” column on Joe Morgenstern’s excellent page in the Wall Street Journal does not carry an author’s name; so I am assuming it is by JM himself, and I am shocked that one of our best critics could write about Buck Privates and not mention “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” not mention “Bounce Me Brother with a Solid Four,” not mention “In Apple Blossom Time,”  not mention the Andrews Sisters at all.  Who won World War 11 anyway?  (See Rick’s Flicks 3/24/12, “The Andrews Sisters in the Movies.”)


Until then,
See you at the movies,

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