Monday, November 13, 2006
Stranger Than Fiction
I went to see my brother this weekend to celebrate his birthday (oh, I'm sorry, his 20th anniversary of his 25th birthday). We decided to catch a movie, and despite having Will Ferrell in it, we chose Stranger Than Fiction.
I first became aware of this movie through Dave Long at Faith*in *Fiction. He linked to the trailer, and I began to anticipate this movie. I don't normally make opening weekends of movies unless it has the words "Star" and "Wars" in the title or is made by Pixar. I was glad that it worked out to go.
It's an all-star cast with the aforementioned Ferrell, Emma Thompson, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah, and Maggie Gyllenhaal. Ferrell is Harold Crick, an IRS agent who counts each of his strokes while brushing his teeth, and lives an entirely predictable and boring life.
Until he hears the voice.
The voice is narrating what he's just done. The number of brushstrokes. Getting off the bus. Harold gets annoyed and yells at the sky to shut-up. But he doesn't get too concerned until the voice announces: "Little did he know," and mentions his imminent death.
This leaves Harold in a bit of a dilemma, and he ends up turning to literary professor Hoffman to help figure out the mystery. All the while, Emma Thomspon's author struggling with writer's block tries to find the best way to kill off Crick, with Queen Latifah as her assistant.
It was a very enjoyable movie, especially if you are of the writing persuasion. There were several laugh-out-loud moments, which I didn't really anticipate. I don't know that the romance sub-plot is very believable or plausible, but considering the whole movie's premise, that isn't a strong negative. Latifah was wasted in her role. Overall, I think it is well worth checking out. All you writers ought to appreciate it (although I hesitate to endorse it too much, as we are a notoriously picky crowd :D).