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September 10, 2006
A Not So Good Film

Ridley Scott's "A Good Year" was not a bad idea. It was never meant to be a classic, terribly original or a breathtaking experience. But the idea of seeing Russell Crowe find himself in Provence in a romantic actually sounds to me like a recipe for a truly enjoyable time at the movies.

Alas, the execution is simply rather clunky. First and foremost, the romance in the film is not compelling at all, with Crowe and Cotillard having no chemistry. Moreover, the story is filled with cliches from charicatures of stock brokers to obvious irony to a yappity dog. And the humour is extremely predictable and lacking in originality. Neither Scott nor Crowe have comedy as their forte.

The film is in no way horrible. Crowe is miscast but he still manages to charm. One also really wishes Finney - who brings such a unique aura to the screen - had been given more screentime. Phillipe Le Sourd's capturing of Provence makes the viewer truly 'fall in love' with the area. And there are some legitimately amusing moments.

But at the end of the day, the film ultimately fails to be consistently funny...or be truly charming...or be romantic in the slightest.

By the way, I *again* heard praise for O'Toole work in "Venus" while standing in the lineup. I haven't heard such across-the-board love for anything else that's screened here yet.


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