Tag Archives: Nine movie

“Nine” ain’t no movie

Everything that doesn’t work about the movie “Nine” is the reason you should see it.

Stay with me here.

I never saw “Nine” performed on stage , so I entered the movie theater last night knowing only what I had gleaned from the trailer.  (I did know it was directed by Rob Marshall, the genius behind “Chicago,” a magnificent movie based on — in my opinion — a very average musical.)

But we’re talking about “Nine,” which will always fall short in comparison.  Marshall’s latest attempt plays like a film of a  musical instead of a truly integrated movie.  He attempts to tie the lavish production numbers together with an off-stage narrative, but those scenes never reach the same level of intensity or interest.  The structure is always visible, and in a movie, the seams shouldn’t be showing.

Marshall even brings the entire cast back at the end of “Nine” to take a bow.  Sure, that’s expected in a stage musical, but in a movie, we have this little thing called the credits.  His backstage gimmick pulls the audience out of the story before it has reached its conclusion.

That being said…

The production numbers that are at the heart of “Nine” are incredible — visually and musically, they are not to be missed.  The voices of all the actors are also surprisingly strong…even Daniel Day Lewis, who had not sung a lick before this movie.

Fergie’s number, ‘Be Italian,’  is the move’s showstopper and anthem (although Marshall apparently did not find her attractive enough to grant a single close-up — something all the other actresses had in spades). Tsk tsk.

And the final bow — so theater-y, so out of place in a movie — is visually stunning.

So, see “Nine”…for the spectacle, for the music, for the pure theater.

(You can see a real movie another day.)

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My weekend has not gone as planned.

The plan?  Movies, movies, and then perhaps, if time…another movie.

There are so many I haven’t seen — “Young Victoria” and “Nine” are on my short list.  And I have only seen nine of Entertainment Weekly’s ’25 Movies to See before the Oscars.’

Embarrassing.

The long weekend stretched in front of me in opportunity.  The only other things on my to-do list were taking down the Christmas decorations and doing laundry, which I did simultaneously Saturday morning.

The rest of my free time was going to be spent in a darkened theater, eating trash food, being transported.

Perfection.

And then my DVR and my local PBS station ruined everything.

I mentioned yesterday that my DVR recorded the rebroadcast of Masterpiece Theatre’s wonderful ‘Little Dorrit’ — which I watched in its entirety on New Year’s Day.  I noticed this morning that it had recorded ‘David Copperfield’ as well — the version starring Harry Potter’s Daniel Radcliffe in his first starring role.

So, once again, I found myself mesmerized for two hours this morning, watching another excellent Masterpiece Theatre production.  How fun to see Daniel Radcliffe and Maggie Smith together long before they played student and instructor at Hogwart’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the Harry Potter series of movies.

Many advertising campaigns in 2009 emphasized staying home and rediscovering the entertainment found there.   Apparently it took the new year to remind me of the wonderful programming available on PBS.

Next up — “Oliver Twist” and “Cranford.”

As soon as I get back from the movies.