Thursday, February 12, 2009

Vicky Cristina Barcelona

According to this "Stuff White People Like" satirical post, all white (and by "white" the blog's author means upper-brow elitist) like to travel to Europe, after university :). They believe, visiting Europe would alter their life, and would make them more culturally and artistically unique.

This is what we see in Woody Allen's latest movie, Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Watching the movie is like reading a beautiful novel, where the characters have fluidity, and are not just some caricatures we usually see on our cinema screens. I really liked the movie, and strongly recommend it. It reminded me of Woody Allen's other marvel, Match Point. A brief note about the acting: Penelope Cruz's character, Maria Elena, was the key catalyst in this movie, but it was Rebecca Hall's performance, and character, Vicky, that resonated with me.

The movie showed, we look at the Old World in wonderment, and while we are there we look at our North American materialistic lives with contempt. We hope that by being in Europe we are better than the rest of the people back home. We believe Europe would make us more culturally and artistically aware, and subsequently we would be able to escape the redundancy of the 9 to 5 quotidian.

The movie raised the question of love. Something Woody Allen has been playing around with, since Annie Hall. The reason love is such a well-discussed, and yet enigmatic topic is because it varies with a person's expectations. There is the innocent-not-so-tainted teenage love. But, as we grow older and our responsibilities start to pile up, our definition of love also becomes more realistic. Maybe the love you eventually settle for is not something you had fantasized about. Depending on what you are looking for, love could be rational, practical, and predictable. Or, maybe you are sure what love should not be like, but unaware of what it actually is. A Venn diagram would be oh so very handy in this case.

Then, supposedly, there are these mythical people who know from the get-go what they are looking for, and can identify it when they see it. Enter this David Gray song: "Be Mine".

I think, Woody Allen summarized the state of relationships cynically, and yet realistically, in the last scene of Annie Hall:


Maria Sondule said...

Haha, yes, white people like going to Europe for the cultural experience.
I can't watch the ending because then the movie will be ruined for me! Aah!

changetheworld360 said...

I'm glad you liked the movie. I concur with you about Penélope Cruz and Rebecca Hall. Both gave fantastic performances, but I really related to the latter, at least in some respects, not necessarily on love life, obviously. :)
I'll have to check out Match Point sometime.
Sorry to mention it again, but I'm still itching to read your thoughts on Revolutionary Road!

Zany said...

I highly recommend "Annie Hall". You would find that a lot of our cultural references come from that movie.

I could also relate to Rebecca Hall's character the most. I am sorry, now that you have mentioned it again, I promise my next post (the one after "Mathematical Aphrodisiac") would be about "Revolutionary Road". It is just I really liked your review and now I feel I have nothing new to add to what you have already said :(. But, I promise it'll be up soon. Sorry. Btw, how is your cold now?