Critical acclaim and I have never really seen eye-to-eye at the cinema, or anywhere now that I think about it. I don’t think it’s me being contrary, I guess I’m just missing whatever brain cells you need to appreciate art, or Oscar-baiting movies, or revered books.
So with some trepidation I saw Woody Allen’s latest film. I think it might only be my second of his films I’ve see, the other one being “Match Point” that presumably a friend wanted to see, and I quite fancied Jonathan Rhys-Meyers so went along with it. So I don’t really know what his best films are like. I’m suppose to have seen “Annie Hall” by now, I gather, but the opportunity hasn’t come up yet.
Anyway, “Blue Jasmine” follows the collapse of a New York socialite Jasmine (Cate Blanchett) whose husband, an evil Jack Donaghy from 30 Rock (Alec Baldwin) gets locked up for epic financial evil-doings. Having lost everything financially and having had a nervous breakdown, she moves in with adopted sister, salt-of-the-Earth Ginger (Sally Hawkins) as she tried to put her life back together. What a touching idea for a dramedy about rebuilding lost connections.
Except it’s not, as practically everyone in the cast makes you flinch. Understanding Ginger is probably the nicest, though you probably know a Ginger – while Jasmine’s judgements of her are harsh, you sort of agree, particularly when you meet her vile boyfriend Chili and yobby ex-husband Augie.
While Jasmine’s ex-husband is a bad guy, he seems like the most together person there, and capable of decent human interaction, unlike Jasmine. She’s not actively horrible, I doubt really that she ever meant to be rude to anyone not on her social level, but her interactions with her sister in New York are really cringeworthy.
The film makes use of flashbacks to her past life and its unravelling, which explains partly how she ended up so lost when her life got pulled away. I just don’t know what I’m suppose to think about her, I veered between contempt and grudging sympathy when she hit rock bottom several times. I’m not going to give any spoilers but … I don’t know what to make of the ending. I feel like I needed some closure, that’s all.
It wasn’t bad, but it’s not really my sort of film as a mush-headed pacifist, everyone was so dysfunctional and horrible that I found it impossible to relate and difficult to sympathise with any of them. Perhaps that was the point, but evidently I missed it.