Sunday, June 26, 2011

Ordinary People - 1980

Wow - it's an actual movie review!  Wake the kids and phone the neighbors!  Are you excited?

First things first.  I canceled my Netflix subscription last night, because Blockbuster's prices are now so low, it's cheaper to rent in town.  Yes, this does limit my selection - but I caught myself frequently sending back movies to Netflix unwatched anyway - so the extended selection does you no good if you don't watch them, right?

If you have a Blockbuster card, you should know that you can get a movie a day for FREE until July 4th.  Yes, that means today's movie was FREE!  Add this incentive to the fact that the local Blockbuster has the cutest little guys that work there, with whom I flirt outrageously every time I'm in, and Netflix just had to go.

So today we are watching "Ordinary People," winner of the Best Picture Oscar for 1980 and the breakout film for that cute little Timothy Hutton.  From the back of the box:

"An extraordinary motion picture, Ordinary People is an intense examination of a family being torn apart by tension and tragedy.  Donald Sutherland and Mary Tyler Moore star as the upper-middle class couple whose "ordinary" existence is irrevocably shattered by the death of their oldest son in a boating accident.  Timothy Hutton is the younger son, struggling against suicide and guilt left by the drowning.  Judd Hirsch is the empathetic psychiatrist who provides his life line to survival.  Mary Tyler Moore gives a riveting portrayal of the inexplicably aloof mother.  Robert Redford's achievement as director, after more than twenty years as a superstar in front of the camera, earned him an Oscar.  Superb performances and masterful direction complement the award-winning screenplay, based upon the novel by Judith Guest."

An 8-word summary of this film:  Mary Tyler Moore is the WORST MOTHER EVER.

So, high schooler Timothy Hutton (Conrad) attempts suicide after his brother's death, and spends 4 months in a mental hospital.  The film picks up a few weeks after his release.  Conrad confides in his friend that he wants to go back to the hospital, and after about 10 minutes of Mary Tyler Moore, I can see why.  Watching this family is like watching a slow-motion train wreck, or maybe the Challenger explosion, or maybe the Hindenburg disaster.  Wowza.  Just when you think it can't get any worse, well, either MTM or Donald Sutherland opens their mouth and boom- it does.   Those Baby Boomers, I tell ya.  Me me me all the time.  No wonder us Gen X'ers are so screwed up.

If you decide to watch this one, you might want to rent a comedy as a chaser to cheer yourself back up after you finish it.  If you are a parent, you are probably going to want to make your family a really nice meal and kiss them all to cleanse Mary Tyler Moore from your brain.

All that said, I'm going to go with a "see it"...but not an OMGSEEITRIGHTNOW" because it did was over 2 hours, which in 1980 would have been equivalent to a 4-hour movie.  Anyhow, there's only so much angst a person can take, and I maxxed out at 90 minutes or so.

1 comment:

  1. Wake the kids and phone the neighbors!

    YAAAAAY!!! My Tina!!!



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