Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Book of Love explores love, life, grief, and healing

Movie Title:   The Book of Love

Grade:  C

Rating:  PG-13, 107 minutes

In a Nutshell: Written and directed by Bill Purple, this profanity-laced story is about death, love, insanity, and healing. 

Uplifting theme
  • “Try something new.  Be bold.” – Penny  (Jessica Biel)
  • “We aren’t supposed to be alone in our journeys, that we need other people to know we’re alive, that we matter.” - The Girl/Oprah  (Maisie Williams)
  • “We all need help.” – Henry Hershel (Jason Sudeikis) 
  • Accept people for who they are.

Things I liked:
  • The Justin Timberlake score was lovely.  That was nice of him to give a boost to his beautiful wife’s film.
  • The cast was an interesting mix: Jason Sudeikis, Jessica Biel, Maisie Williams, Mary Steenburgen, Orlando Jones, and Paul Reiser.
  • Those jumping fish in Louisiana were pretty cool and they really are real.  You've probably seen the YouTube videos of them.
  • My sister's husband died young.  It was painful to watch her go through the process of saying goodbye to a loved one and trying to rebuild a new life.  While the film doesn't necessarily present any new perspectives on death and grieving, it still presents a real journey of sorrow that people can relate to. 
 Things I didn’t like:
  • I like Jason Sudeikis in comedies, but he just didn’t dig deeply enough to give the emotional performance this film needed.
  • The Southern accents are pretty bad, except for that funny Cajun guy, Pascal, who couldn’t even speak English played by Richard Robichaux.
  • Why on earth was Oprah spoon-feeding Henry?  That was a weird scene.  By the way, Oprah Winfrey is NOT in this movie.  The young girl calls herself Oprah.
  • I hate it when young kids have such terrible potty mouths.  Game of Thrones: Season 1 Maisie Williams' character was more annoying than charming.
  • Henry does some pretty irresponsible things that seemed more stupid than whimsical and bold. 

Interesting lines:
  • “There’s an old Japanese proverb: The wounded koi cannot tend to its gills if it seeks solace and diversion of the pleasant seaweed god.” – (Paul Reiser)
  • “67% of deaths happen when no one’s looking. What I never could find out is how many people live while nobody’s watching.” – Oprah
  • “Haven’t you ever wanted to do something extraordinary?” - Oprah
  • “Death ain’t about the people who die anyway.  It’s about the ones who have the s**tluck of having to go on without them.” – Opray
  • “Some people try to hold on to the memories.  Others try to forget.  Neither one works.  And after enough time passes by, you find you ain’t the same you used to be.” – Oprah
  • “Some things are better when they’re not perfect, you know?” – Oprah
  • “Every brave journey is filled with surprises.” – Oprah 

Funny lines:
  • “They don’t like it.” – Henry (Jason Sudeikis)
“Worse.  They love it.” – Wendell (Paul Reiser)
  • “Whoever heard of a reception without shrimp?” – Julia (Mary Steenburgen)
  • “Perverts got mustaches.  Everybody knows that.” – Cornelius Thibadeaux (Orlando Jones) 

Did you know?
*  It was originally titled "The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea."
*  It had its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival last April, but didn't get released in the United States until this week.

Tips for parents: 
  • There are some heavy themes of death, remorse, sorrow, abuse, poverty.
  • You see smoking and someone eating marijuana-laced stew.
  • Lots of profanity.
  • People call each other ugly names.

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