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Tuesday, March 01, 2005

DVD Review: I Heart Huckabees 

What you get out of I Heart Huckabees will likely depend on what you put into it. So despite the fact that a number of adjectives (e.g., pretentious, pointless, silly, superficial...) could describe the film, its lesser points won't necessarily diminish the pleasure you get from watching.

I think there are two ways to look at I Heart Huckabees. If you think it's serious in its existential, talking-in-circles philosophy then it's a disaster, because the script isn't nearly as intelligent as it pretends to be. But... I didn't see it that way. To me it felt intentionally nonsensical, as if the filmakers were trying to poke fun at serious philisophical wannabe masterpieces.

In short, I loved it.

But let's face facts: it's not really a "smart" movie. It has little to no coherency in its story (a word I use loosely in this context), and some of the characters walk a thin line between grating and painful. Then there's Jude Law, who sports one of the worst American accents in the history of British thespianism, as he continues a streak of annoying performances.

But the rest of the cast was great. Lily Tomlin and Dustin Hoffman were wonderful together, as a pair of married "existential detectives." Marky Mark turned in the best role of his that I've seen in a long time, ating as the "other" to Jason Schwarzman's 43rd reprisal of Rushmore's Max Fischer, which fortunately fits in this setting.

I'm really not sure what I Heart Huckabees is about. But I also know that I didn't really care. Must every film fill a void or awe us with its impact? I Heart Huckabees will do neither, but it doesn't keep it from having a little bit of goofy fun. Its humorous antics and oddball characters were enough to keep me entertained.



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