Saturday, March 18, 2006

The Bridges of Madison County (1995)

I rented Clint Eastwood's "The Bridges of Madison County" and watched it last night. It was refreshing to see filmmaking at its best. No wonder he's my favourite director.
The story is deceptively straightforward, a celebration of dialogue, of patience, and suspense. The only part of the film that felt forced or unnatural was the way in which the movie was setup as a set of flashbacks. The movie begins by telling us that Meryl Streep's character is dead and the children--one-dimensional and self-important--begin to discover that their mother had a 4-day affair with a photographer (Clint Eastwood). These children read through their mom's memoirs, adding a kind of comedic tone to the film that I could personally do without.
This film is brilliant.

1 comment:

Mad.J.D. said...

Does "deceptively straightforward" mean that it is straightforward without the viewer realizing it? Would that even be possible? Or does it mean that the viewer keeps expecting something non-straightforward to happen and it never does? Maybe it just means that it does not fulfill expectations of non-straightforwardness. Wait, I already said that...

Anyway, I watched this movie when I was 18 and didn't much care for it, but that may have been reactionary on my part because the novel it's based on was so ubiquitous at the time that every housewife in America was hitting me over the head with it. Perhaps it will bear another look.