Thursday, May 11, 2006

TRH Movie - The Rainmaker

The joy of the Faux-Vo coupled with easy access to TMN means that I tape a lot of movies that a) I never watch and then erase or b) that I try to watch and never make it all the way through. But with this damn cold that I've contracted, after work yesterday, I lay on the couch and watched Francis Ford Coppola's The Rainmaker. It's a fairly average film, and it feels very dated even though it was only made 10 years ago.

Made during that spate of time where every John Grisham novel seemed to be adapted for the big screen, The Rainmaker lacks heart. The performances are okay, the cast quite good, but there's no driving plot that keeps the movie on track. There's plenty of story: young lawyer (Matt Damon) takes on big insurance company, meets abused girl he falls in love with, goes to court for the first time, etc. But it all feels kind of forced, as if the script just needed another good re-write to get it where it needed to be.

But then it got me thinking that even making a mediocre movie that 10 years later feels dated and looks like it belongs on the Superstation, means that Hollywood hasn't changed all that much. All this moaning and groaning about the box office slump that's continued into this year hasn't made the movies any better; it's just made people more conscious of the fact that the formula doesn't always work. The Rainmaker has all the right ingredients for a blockbuster but it just doesn't come out of the oven fully baked.

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