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Love/hate - I love the movies but hate cineplexes, overpriced lobby treats and seat-kicking mutants
[tally: 73%] 73%
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Movie Site : Movie Reviews : Drama : All Is Bright Page 1 of 1
 
Title: All Is Bright
Rating:
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Genre: Drama
Release Date: Oct 4, 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Runtime: 107 minutes
Director: Phil Morrison
Writer: Melissa James Gibson
Distributor: Anchor Bay Films
 
Other Information:
 
 
Rogue's Review:

They should've stayed in Canada for the winter


Caught this last night on cable, expecting at the very least a decent film, considering the two Pauls. Giamatti is one of my favorite actors, I even created a yahoo group called talkpaul after he was overlooked for an Oscar nod for Sideways a few years back. Paul Rudd ain't no schlub either; he's always good no matter what he plays as well. The problem here, as it usually is, begins with the script.

A lot of critics have mentioned how implausible most of the goings-on are in this mess, which they are. I was willing to overlook a lot because I found myself invested in Giamatti's character. But by the time -=- SPOILER ALERT -=- the money box from the Christmas tree sales gets lifted in the most unbelievably contrived manner and the two Pauls resort to their old thievery habits, stealing, of all things, a grand piano, out of an apartment window, so that Giamatti's young daughter (who's been told by her mother who's now engaged to Rudd's character that her daddy died of some unnameable cancer) can have a piano for Christmas (he promised one to her in his head, see) I was shaking my head in disappointed disbelief.-=- END OF SPOILER -=-

Something else that bugged me: If you are aware of karma, you will know that what you do to others will be done to you in one form or another eventually. Here we have the two Pauls resorting back to thievery after they've just been stolen from, with no awareness whatsoever, of course, of the karma law. This is understandable considering these two ain't the most enlightened characters on the planet, but it bugged me because they hadn't learned anything, especially Giamatti's sad sack, who'd spent four years in the slammer for a theft crime. Just sayin'.

The movie ended up this way -=- SPOILER ALERT -=- (the stealing of the piano, with his daughter running outside her house to play it in the snow, still never knowing about her father, who skulks off into the sad, lonely night) -=-END OF SPOILER -=- to keep the heavy-handed contrivedness going. This is a shame, because with more care given to the details of the story - letting it unfold in a far more organic, believable fashion - this could have been very decent, poignant, even moving. Everything was heavy-handed, including the title: All Is Bright, which of course is supposed to be ironic considering the anything-but-bright situation these guys are in, and the tagline is even more heavy-handed. The original title, Almost Christmas, is almost better, but obviously it doesn't matter since the film was so disappointing in so many ways.

 
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