Laurel Canyon

Sam and Alex are on their way to a picture perfect life. He’s a newly minted psychiatrist about to start his residency in L.A. She’s a brilliant academic finishing up her dissertation. All Alex (Kate Beckinsale) needs is a little peace and quiet, and Sam (Christian Bale) has the perfect place in which to star their new life: his mother’s house in Laurel Canyon. The only problem is that his mother hasn’t cleared out yet. Jane is still there, producing an album for her latest boy toy. She’s a successful record producer whose rock n’ roll lifestyle wasn’t exactly conducive to raising a son. Now that they’re all trapped in a house together, our straight-laced couple is going to clash wildly with Jane’s wanton ways, and they might even be corrupted…

There’s something to this movie about self-discovery, freedom of expression. It’s non-judgmental by 2003 standards and it’s a little wet 17-CTEK-1908-LC_McDormand2-613x463and wild, in a having a threesome with my mother-in-law and her skeevy boyfriend kind of way. Don’t think about that too hard. Christian Bale is doughy and passive but ultimately more believable as a psychiatrist than Kate Beckinsale is as a nerd. Which, granted, is not saying much. But man, is she a bad actress or is she a BAD actress? In this she whispers and slides her glasses up and down her nose, and confuses that with a character.

Fine. The real reason, the only reason to go back in time 15 years, is to watch Frances McDormand do her thing. She does all the things! We genuinely do not deserve her, how could we, but until she figures that out, we must hoard all of her performances and allow movies like this to just become another car on the runaway, unstoppable, Frances train. Toot toooot, all aboard!

 

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4 thoughts on “Laurel Canyon

  1. selizabryangmailcom

    Frances, Frances, Frances. I wish she was in more stuff. Is she in stuff I maybe don’t know about? I only recall seeing her recently in a Transformers movie. And Kate–hubby doesn’t mind looking at her. I guess she does THAT well. Christen: used to like him a lot more before his meltdown on the Terminator set. Hate when my “actor” bubbles get burst. I remember this movie when it came out. We enjoyed it. As far as dramas go. 🙂

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