Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Eat Pray Love

Have you seen this movie? If so, did you hate it? Apparently lots of people did, if the many reviews I read online are any indication.

I must confess that I don't quite understand all the vitriol. Sure, it's a movie about an upper-middle-class American woman who just isn't satisfied with her marriage and the way her life is going--and it appears that plenty of viewers don't exactly get what Elizabeth Gilbert (or her character, in the movie) found so terrible about her seemingly-charmed life. Yeah, yeah--okay.

Sure, the plot isn't fully developed, it can be hard to understand Elizabeth's motivation at times, and you'll note some Hollywood-ish inconsistencies if you've already read the book (I have, though it was quite a while back, just after it was published).

But it really wasn't that bad. And man, oh man--this is a pretty movie. I liked it primarily because I couldn't stop ogling all the Italian, Indian, and Balinese architecture, interiors, food, and clothing. To me, Eat Pray Love was more of a (lengthy) video decor and travel magazine than a plot-driven movie. Is there anything so wrong with that?


vmichelle said...

I saw it recently. And I definitely didn't hate it, but it did stir up a lot of reactions and feelings - and note I haven't read Eat Pray Love, so I can't comment on the book/movie disconnect. I guess the main feeling being I don't relate to women who've never been without a man. I don't relate to needing to leave your man to find yourself. And the whole relational dynamics with her first husband gave me the icks feeling - like okay, so you don't like your current life - does that mean you don't like your husband? I also find it ironic that a woman whose complaint was never being alone long enough to find herself, then only went without a man for 9 months before hooking up with one again! But I digress... I do, however, relate to the fantasy of spending a year traveling the world. Sign me up. And it was a gorgeous movie. The sights. The clothes! I want to rent a cottage in Bali. With a bicycle. Yes, please!

Hausfrau said...

V, I totally agree with what you said--especially the part about leaving her husband. It was explained better and more thoroughly in the book, where you got a better sense of her anguish--but I still thought the result (her leaving him) was sad and unfortunate.

A cottage in Bali? Me, too!

Samurai Mom said...

I haven't seen it yet for the reasons mentioned above. It just seems so petty to me and indicative of the misplaced priorities of our society. But if the plot doesn't seem to have much effect of the movie I just might watch it.

Jennifer said...

I haven't seen the movie. I have read the book, which I was completely prepared to hate because omgshallowgetoveryourself. But, she was so earnest and seemed to work so hard on understanding herself and the world around her that I was won over. I'm a little scared to see the movie because I'm not sure how they would capture the depth of her internal journey and without that we're right back at omgshallowgetoveryourself.

Bee said...

I totally agree with your assessment of E,P,L . . . it was eye-candy, for sure, even if it did lack the depth of the book. As for whether or not Elizabeth Gilbert deserved to feel pain/despair, it seems quite unfair to me to suggest that materially privileged lives aren't also prone to existential (or just emotional) angst! Surely anyone who has ever questioned the point of his/her own existence -- not to mention smaller questions of whether or not one is living life in the "right" or best possible way -- are bound to go through questioning and even despairing times.

btw, our taste in favorite books is so very similar! I don't know about you, but I always think that I will like a person who adores the same books that I do. ;)

Hausfrau said...

Bee, you make a great point. I think many have looked (probably with some jealousy) at Elizabeth Gilbert's life and wondered how she could possibly have been unhappy, with all that she had. Well, that's is obviously so unfair. It's a bit too easy to judge someone else's life, isn't it?

Oh, and I absolutely agree about liking someone who shares my taste in books!

Carrie said...

I didn't think this one was as bad as it was made out to be either. I didn't like it as much as I would have had I NOT read the book, but it was still okay. I thought it did a wonderful job of portraying the three different destinations. So beautiful!

Hausfrau said...

Yes, Carrie--I agree that Italy, India, and Bali were portrayed beautifully!

Relyn said...

Haven't seen it or read it. I liked your take on it, though.

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