Thursday, July 17, 2014


Opening this weekend the new ZACH BRAFF movie Wish I was here. His character, Aidan, is 35 and is trying to come to grips with his life. The phrase that attracted me to this movie is said by his character when he asks his rabbi: "What about my dreams? Doesn't GOD believe in my pursuit of happiness?"
In our culture we are told by popular literature that we can make our dreams come true, that we must have complete faith these will materialize if we risk any chance at all of them becoming real! So this phrase resonated with me. But how long do we hang in there? Is there a point when we must grow up and face reality?

Aidan wants to be a professional actor but he never gets the part. As he struggles to find work, his father, MANDY PATINKIN as Gabe, will enter the final stages of cancer; his wife, KATE HUDSON as Sarah, works at a boring job to keep the family together; the eldest daughter, JOEY KING as Grace, is having a huge crisis as she is being taken out of the private school that brought her a sense of direction and purpose.

Poetry is the underlying structure of the film. The concepts being explored are completely relevant but the major flaw of the movie is its tone. It lacks cohesiveness and passion. For example we don't feel the chemistry between Aidan and Sarah, or for that matter with Sarah and her children. So for me it failed to deliver its punch. On the plus side, there is excellent cinematography of the west coast, its dark ocean and ragged beaches.


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