I Heart Huckabees (USA, 2004)

i-heart-huckabees-movie-poster-2004-1020266421Directed by: David O. Russell. This director is one of those names that kept popping up as I delved into the Youtube channel for the Hollywood Reporter and their roundtable Oscar discussions. Russell, especially from The Fighter and this year’s Silver Linings Playbook, is getting quite a lot of buzz, and I had only seen Three Kings, which I remember being pretty cool. This movie was heartily recommended to me a few times over the years, but I was almost resolutely against watching a movie with such a dumb title. I have a grudge against films or books with titles that are supposed to be really cute and quaint and quirky and derpy derp derp etc. That being said, I’m glad I gave it a chance, because this is a pretty nice little movie (even if it does have a stupid title). I’m not sure how this movie would go over with philosophy students and intellectuals etc: again, it’s really quaint and oversimplified. Lately, though, I’m much more forgiving of movies that appear at first glance to be just “bad movies” and I’m inclined to forgive their “badness” as just markers of an “interesting” movie, as in, “Isn’t this movie interesting? It’s got all of these weird inconsistencies and elements that don’t really fit just floating around.” In this case, they’re floating around to create the effect of laughter, and a particularly unique kind of laughter. As an “intellectual” movie, then, this is probably a huge failure. As a drama, even, it kind of doesn’t work—it’s hard to be emotionally invested in some cartoon characters having a quarter-life crisis, even without all of the extreme whackiness this movie uses as its basic backdrop. (And honestly, that scene where Isabelle Huppert makes the “big revelation” about the main guy, comparing him moping about his cat dying to the African war refugee—kind of awful.) However, as a comedy, pure and simple, this movie’s pretty okay. If you watch it, you will laugh (unless you suck). I think Jude Law and Naomi Watts kind of steal the show here, I could watch them all day. This is no Waking Life, but it’s funner to watch.

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4 responses to “I Heart Huckabees (USA, 2004)

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