Tag Archives: Alexander Payne

Do I look older?

Director Alexander Payne and I have never seen eye to eye.

Since his movie Election (which I did like), the rest of his filmsSideways, Cedar Rapids, The Descendants — just don’t speak to me.

I doubt he’s losing sleep over it.

NEBRASKAThat didn’t stop me from getting excited to see his latest awards magnet Nebraska, starring Bruce Dern and Saturday Night Live alum Will Forte.

It seemed to have it all.

The two leading men, of course.  The black-and-white look, which seemed perfect for this road trip film.  Great trailers, too.

Tragically, Alex has led me astray yet again.

In the film, the car trip takes three or four days.  I would swear the movie — advertised as 1 hour 54 minutes — is actually that long.  It is slow…so very slow.

The driving sequences are slow.  The conversations are slow.  There’s a couple of fights scenes, and their fists look like they are in slow motion even though they’re not.

I really enjoyed three scenes in the movie. And the performances are wonderful — especially June Squibb, who plays Bruce Dern’s kick of a wife.   But there are long stretches of your life…

..that you will never get back.

By George

Have you seen this promotional pic of the new movie The Descendants?  Did you wonder what George Clooney was hiding from?

Turns out his co-stars.

I saw the movie this afternoon with my friend Caroline who is visiting from Kentucky — George Clooney’s hometown, in fact.  (She knows the man.)  So we were excited to see if the movie and George himself deserved all the Oscar buzz.

Not so much.

Apparently director Alexander Payne spent all his money on the big man himself and surrounded George with a TV movie-of-the-week cast.  I mean, Shaggy from Scooby-Doo as his co-star?  Get real.

While there were excellent turns by Shailene Woodley as George’s oldest daughter Alexandra and Beau Bridges as his cousin Hugh, no one else really measured up to George or the script.

Hey Alexander — when you center a film around a sick room, you might want to make sure your cast is healthy first.