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Julie & Julia: The Movie

August 29, 2009

julieandjulia-movie posterJust a quick note about the Julie & Julia Movie…I know I said books, books and only books all the time books – but it’s my blog so I can deviate from time to time. Besides this is a movie taken from a book about a blog!

We went to see the movie opening weekend which was also my birthday weekend. Good thing it was my birthday weekend because had it not been I may never have been able to talk my husband and teenagers into seeing it on the Big Screen with me and they ended up actually liking it. (Hmmm…maybe they will accept my movie recommendations from now on? Hmmm…nah probably not.)

It has taken me this long to post about it because of the ‘should I stick to just books or make an exception’ debate in my head. After a hard fought battle the ‘make an he exception’ side won.

I was both impressed with and disappointed by the movie at the same time. Impressed because it is really a good movie and if I had never read the book I would have just enjoyed it for being a good movie. Disappointed because having read the book I felt like there wasn’t enough in the movie that reflected who Julie Powell really is or what she went through and truly accomplished in the course of that fateful year. The majority of the focus seemed to be on Julia Child’s story with Julie Powell as a supporting character when in this case it was the opposite since without JP’s book/blog this particular movie would not have been made. (Am I ranting?)

Co-Stars & Supporting Actors:

Meryl Streep completely stole the show! She was amazing as Julia Child – I mean just incredible. Julia Child was a force to be reckoned with while still coming off as an everyday kinda gal. Meryl Streep made her even more real than she seemed to be in the re-runs I used to watch of her cooking show and that is a feat unto itself. I can’t say enough just how entrancing Meryl Streep was in this movie. Truth is there have been quite a few of her movies where I was completely unimpressed with her acting, so I was pleasantly surprised by this performance.

Amy Adams definitely held her own against the legendary Ms. Streep. She owned this part and it never felt like she was acting at all. When she was on screen you could almost forget that it was going to switch back to Julia Child’s story soon and then when it did for a minute I was like ‘wait…not yet!” Unfortunately she was in far fewer scenes than her co-star so there is not much else I can say about her performance.

I can’t remember the names of the other actors right now so bare with me… The actors who played Paul Child, Eric Powell and Julia Child’s sister were wonderful also. I don’t think the movie would  have been nearly as good without those particular actors. I feel so bad for not remembering their names – I could of course go searching the web to find them but I have had this post saved as a draft for 2 days already and I don’t want to delay it any longer. *The delay was not caused by my lack of skills in searching the web for their names mind you – just delayed by interruptions every time I have tried to finish this one!

Final Act:

What really bothered me about the movie was how Julie Powell is made to seem so very whiny. Sure she complained, she bitched and she even had her share of meltdowns in the book and on her original blog, but I never read that as whining. In the movie she is almost annoying, which again she didn’t seem to be. There were so many funny escapades in the book that revolved around preparing to cook, cooking or eating and most of them were left out of the movie in favor of scenes where she was whining. So to me that is the major drawback to the movie – it doesn’t seem to reflect the Julie Powell that I loved reading about and that’s just a shame.

Closing Scene:

Like I said though if I had never read the book I would have just thought it was a really good movie. I am glad I saw it and even more glad that I was able to enjoy it without my book-snob bias ruining it for me.

Bon Appetit!

Heather

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One Comment leave one →
  1. September 13, 2009 01:57

    I like how you are spontaneous with your review, meaning that I can “hear” your voice in it. It doesn’t read as robotic or cliche. I also like how you have the different paragraphs, like the Final Act and the Closing Scene. Very clever.

    You know have me very curious about the book!

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