Amazon Holiday

Monday, August 3, 2009

Paper Heart

Q: What’s the movie about?

A: A pretend documentary asking the question, "What is love?" from the point of view of a girl (Charlyne Yi) who doesn't believe in it.

Q: Who’s in the movie?

A: Charlyne Yi, Michael Cera, Jake M. Johnson

Q: Is this movie worth the price of admission?

A: PhotobucketProceed with Caution. The concept of figuring out what love is to different people around America is heartening, but as my friend Greg says, "It comes off more like 3 characters in search of a story." To prove his point, let me quote some of the dialogue shared between the filmmaker, Nick (played by Jake M. Johnson) and Charlyne: Nick, "What's the movie going to be about? It has to be about something." Charlyne, "I don't know, I guess we'll just get there, and see what happens." Nick, "Did you prepare anything?" Charlyne, "No." Nick, "Charlyne!!!"

Q: Will this movie make me laugh?

A: There are some laughs, but often times it feels like the characters are on the verge of a joke, we think they're setting one up, and then they lose steam, give up, and cut to another scene. It's sort of like a sneeze that won't come out.

Q: Will this movie make me cry?

A: No, but this review kind of makes me cry, when I pretend I'm Charlyne Yi... Well, let's hope she doesn't read it!

Q: Will this movie be up for any awards?

A: It won some screenwriting award at Sundance. Which especially blows your mind when you find out that the script was just a five page outline with a few scenes described in detail, and a few sections described like, "Drive across America and see what happens."

Q: How is the Acting?

A: Michael Cera does mumblecore. Still magic. But watching him pretend to fall in love with his real life girlfriend makes you wonder what he sees in her. She's not nearly as charming and quirky as she thinks she is, and she's way too self aware to sell the concept that she's worried about not having the right genes to fall in love-- even with him, one of the nicest, most lovable people to grace his generation. He's even from Canada! Meanwhile, Charlyne's best quality seems to be her ability to create 2-dimensional cardboard cutouts, which she uses to stage re-enactments of the true love stories of the real people she meets. They are cute... But why isn't Michael Cera using all his money and fame to land some of the hotties on Gossip Girl or 90210, like a normal person?

Q: How is the Directing?

A: The style of filming is reminiscent of what happens when you take a kid who came up with a 3 minute YouTube video that for some incomprehensible reason went viral, and you give him a deal to make a really long YouTube video. The problem with YouTube videos is when they go on for more than a couple of minutes, you start to realize that they're not going to have a point. And then you remember that's because they're made by complete amateurs.

Q: How is the story/script?

A: Charlyne Yi, a girl of less than average looks and personality, uses every ounce of her energy to resist falling in love with an A-list actor who's crazy about her, even though he's way out of her league. It's really confusing. Which is only intensified by the thought that they're a couple in real life, and this film is pretending to be a documentary. Interestingly enough, the best parts of the film are the truly documentary parts, where they interview real people across America, about how they would define love, how they found it, and how they lost it.

Q: Where can I see the trailer?


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