My life has been pretty good lately and I’ve noticed as well that I haven’t been writing. Well most of my writing usually comes from an overwhelming need to justify my thoughts and emotions and I haven’t been feeling that need as of late. Other times, I’m just happy. Unlike some writers, I’m not someone who can sit down and pile drive some genius unto her keyboard. It takes a lot to get me going and for this episode, it’s Begin Again.
Yup, the movie with Adam Levine.
I’m usually good in predicting hits based on their trailers. My intuition told me that this movie will not be a blockbuster but still something worth watching.
Aside from a peek into the world of music production, it bears an understated storyline about picking up the pieces in your life. It’s a movie that focuses on strengths and not weaknesses to draw you in. It didn’t need rock star personalities and groupies. No hysterical fits of tears. It stuck to the story. No gimmicks. First of its strengths, is definitely the story. No embellishments necessary.
Another of the movie’s most definitive strength is its music. I love how they didn’t force Keira Knightly to sing what she can’t. Yet instead managed to play up the strengths of her voice and still keep a song true to the understated (that word again) personality of her character. I’ve been playing the soundtrack over and over again on my Air. I love all the songs but of course, but the vision of Gretta (Keira’s character) peddling her way to freedom against the NY night sky with the song, Lost Stars, playing in the background, grabs me every time.
Ok my main motivation in watching the movie was Adam Levine. Sorry, Mark (Ruffalo). Though I still think you’re brilliant. I was going to watch a movie alone and it didn’t make sense for me to watch Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. With him as the heel losing out on a great love, it dragged this fan girl into an emotional abyss (That’s an exaggeration, of course). Again the theme song plays. ☺ Of course, how that affects me goes to show his effectiveness as an actor. It was a definite surprise.
As much as Keira played Gretta with great authenticity, I can’t help but see Mark as the anchor of the story. His character, Dan, was the catalyst and he kept things moving. They made him an alcoholic down-on-his-luck anti-hero to be able to carry it through. In spite of the depth of his character, he didn’t overshadow the main lead. He knew how to keep to his character and on the down low. And that’s why I think you’re brilliant, Mark. Dan’s moment in the movie was when director, John Carney, revealed Dan’s musical genius while listening to Gretta sing her song about suicide in a dive bar.
Location was a definite strength as well. Why not LA, right? The coldness of being alone in a city can only be represented by no other than the concrete jungle that is New York. I love New York. In fact, I was missing it throughout this movie and wishing I was back there.
For me, New York meant freedom and independence. Yes, you’re seemingly alone but you find yourself when you’re detached from your comforts. And that’s when the best of you surfaces. This is one of the reasons why New York is a great city. No other city makes you grow as fast as the Big Apple. I relished my time when I was there. It was a city that made me feel alive and creative because I only had myself to depend on.
Consistency is another strength of the movie. Gretta’s freedom celebration stayed true to her character. As much as a successful recording career would have brought her the ultimate revenge, it would have cast the movie as stereotypical downer. When she launched her career online, she maintained her independent spirit. She maintained herself as a songwriter who cared about the simplicity of sharing her songs without the expensive trivialities it bears.
Direction is a definite success for this movie and John Carney truthfully expressed the clarity of his intent and I love that about him. His most well-crafted scene was when the two leads shared each other’s playlists through their earplugs while walking through the night scenes of New York. It was a sweet scene steeped in musicality as two wounded souls re-discovering themselves in each other through their playlists.
Enough said. Go and watch it.
I’m a recovering blogger/writer because my sentimentality found its way back to me. That was all I needed. Feels good to be back. Let’s begin again, shall we?
Sorry, couldn’t help it. ☺