Philomena

The weather forecasts called for warm temperatures, and that’s what we got, at least in the afternoon. I saw that the café and the sporting goods shop down the street took the Christmas trees out of their windows over the weekend. At work, we have short on staff. I stopped at my apartment to eat a turkey wrap and macaroni and cheese. I had to go to a meeting at three o’clock. I took a seat and did not say a word during the hour. I thought about how I got paid for one hour for not saying anything. I rushed out to the bus stop afterwards because I wanted to get to the movie theatre in Emeryville by five o’clock. I cursed when the bus was late. I was furious at the girl who engaged in some stupid conversation with the bus driver. I got off the bus and walked quickly, getting to the theatre two minutes before five o’clock. The ticket seller at the box office talked too much about Regal Crown Club Cards and where each theatre was located. Just shut up and keep the line moving! I got a free popcorn for my trouble. I saw that the time printed on my ticket was 5:01. I took a seat before the previews started. Unfortunately, to my right sat a woman who commented loudly about the movie and laughed at inappropriate moments. Apparently, she didn’t watch the news report from Florida about the man who got into an argument with someone about texting in a movie theatre during the previews and shot him to death. I couldn’t stand it after a while and movie to the front section. I could still hear her, though. The movie was “Philomena,” a story of an old woman who searched for her son born fifty years before and given up for adoption. Judi Dench was Philomena, the mother, and Steve Coogan was the journalist named Martin Sixsmith helping her in the name of a human interest story. I thought the story had the characteristics of a Dickens novel and a road trip movie. It was as if Coogan had mixed the literary qualities of “Tristram Shandy” with the oddball clashes of two people in “The Trip.” The Catholic Church and their nuns don’t come across too well in this tale. It was kind of refreshing because the Pope received way too much praise during the past year. I’ve come to think of Judi Dench as M from the James Bond movies. She is good in this movie. There were a couple of scenes where she was similar to June Squibb of “Nebraska.” I would have been excited about getting good food from the hotel for breakfast, just as she was. I don’t think that I would have wanted to see “Big Momma’s House,” though. Since I remembered Stephen Frears for “My Beautiful Laundrette” and “Prick Up Your Ears,” I thought that homosexuality might be a part of the story in “Philomena.” Sixsmith was almost like a Forrest Gump character in the way he seems to be in the right place to meet everybody. The discovery of Philomena’s son and what happened to him was anticlimactic because we just see it on a computer screen. He was born in 1952. The mothers had to work four years doing tasks like the laundry, and they were allowed to see their children for one hour a day. It seemed like a cruel arrangement because the child was always taken away. The nuns had an autographed photo of Jane Russell on the wall. There was a Steve Coogan flashback as he appeared to confuse Jane Russell with Jayne Mansfield. Jayne Mansfield was in “The Girl Can’t Help It,” and she died in a car accident. Jane Russell was in “Gentleman Prefer Blondes” with Marilyn Monroe, and in bra commercials in the 1970s. She died just a few years ago. When Philomena said that she was worried that her son had died on Vietnam, I got the sense that he was born earlier than I first thought. If the baby was born fifty years before the movie was released, he would have been born in 1963 and would have been too young to be drafted even in 1975. The discussion of the son’s life made me think of the death of Freddie Mercury. Following this person’s life during the 1980s and 1990s brought back memories of those years, which seemed to pass too quickly. Fifty years seems like a long time to live with pain, but I can imagine it. There are people from my past that I haven’t spoken to in twenty years. I wondered what happened to the father. He felt the burden to the girl, the young Judi Dench. The one other person I recognized was Mare Winningham, who was in “St. Elmo’s Fire.” She looked unbelievably different than she looked in 1985. I would not watch “St. Elmo’s Fire 2” if they rounded up Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson, and Andrew McCarthy. One scene in Washington that I liked was the visit to the Lincoln Memorial. It made me think of “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.” You would think that if the son had made an effort to find his mother, he would have been able to do it. Couldn’t a private investigator do it? Philomena reminded me of my own mother in one way, and that was a lack of a sense of humor. I liked the movie, except that the ending wasn’t especially satisfying, and that loudmouthed woman ruined many of the big moments. As far as your movies about old people go, I preferred “Nebraska” over this one. I was reminded at moments of “The Guilt Trip,” which I saw at the same theatre last year. I walked out of the theatre at 6:53. I saw the loud woman get in line for popcorn and then head to catch a different movie. She must buy one ticket and spend all day going to different movies. The cashier said that $5 Tuesday was coming to an end because they would charge $6 starting next week. I returned home and watched an episode of “Charlie’s Angels” that had Farrah Fawcett as a guest star. She was kidnapped at a gas station. Farrah Fawcett certainly did not run like an athlete. I had doubts about whether she could really bake a chocolate cake. I recognized Helen Hunt in an episode of “The Bionic Woman.” Some of the people who died on January 15 include Gordon Jackson (1990), Sammy Cahn (1993), Harry Nilsson (1994), and Minnesota Fats (1996). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for January 15, Marilyn Monroe married Joe DiMaggio in 1954. In 1972, Don McLean hit Number One on the singles chart with “American Pie.” In 1974, “Happy Days” had its ABC premiere. In 1994 Harry Nilsson died of heart disease in California at age 52.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Movies. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s