Maggie’s Plan

I watched CBS This Morning and a segment on the 30th anniversary of the release of “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”  They figured that at today’s prices, in 2016 the same day off would cost one million dollars.  I’m assuming that the most expensive items would be the car.  I looked up the American Top 40 playlist for the weekend.  The Top 10 songs on June 10, 1978 were “This Time I’m in It for Love,” “With a Little Luck,” “Take a Chance on Me,” “On Broadway,” “It’s a Heartache,” “Baker Street,” “Feels So Good,” “Too Much Too Little Too Late,” “Shadow Dancing,” and “You’re the One That I Want.”  I went to work to put in a five-hour shift.  I returned home to take a nap, and then I went out to catch the 5:00 showing of “Maggie’s Plan.”  I thought of it as something of a sequel to “Frances Ha,” and it had some similarities to “The Kids Are All Right.”  With the characters writing all sorts of books and giving birth under unusual circumstances, the story had elements of Woody Allen movies like “Manhattan,” “Hannah and Her Sisters,” and “Mighty Aphrodite.”  I’m not too sure I could see how someone like Maggie could fall in love with someone like John, as played by Ethan Hawke.  Hawke was like those other characters in Richard Linklater’s films, although now he has more age in his face.  He is supposed to be an academic type now working on a novel.  He is married to Georgette, played by Julianne Moore.  I kept wondering how much education these actors actually had in real life.  As much as I like Julianne Moore, her accent is unconvincing in this performance.  Maggie had a desire to have a child, and was planning artificial insemination with a pickle man when her relationship with John changed her plans.  What struck me about the pickle man was that he ejaculated a large amount of semen into that container.  It was a bit frightening.  Can a pickle be especially delicious when made by the pickle man?  I noticed that the director chose not to show Maggie going through her pregnancy or her labor.  I was a little surprised at the nudity in one scene with Maggie on John.  I could not figure out how John could be married to Georgette.  She was very cold, and I would have found it hard to touch her.  This clearly wasn’t the Julianne Moore of “The Big Lebowski.”  This movie was filmed entirely in New York, which was good to know, because I was starting to think that all movies were being filmed in Georgia.  Bill Hader was in the cast and was quite amusing, and his presence reminded me of “Trainwreck.”  Maya Rudolph had a couple of funny scenes.  For some reason, John liked to listen to Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark” playing loudly on his stereo.  When he and Georgette hear the song again, but sung in French Canadian style.  I didn’t know what the meaning of the song was, other than to establish the age of the characters.  The men in this movie seemed to not know what was going on, and they were preoccupied with themselves.  I wanted to know how the people found John and Georgette walking in the snow when they seemed hopelessly lost.  If John were a real person, I would have to tell him that I didn’t respect him much.  If his wife knew him better than he knew himself, then all those years of a college education didn’t amount to much.  I thought the ending wasn’t satisfactory.  The resolution came out of the blue.  “Maggie’s Plan” was not some kind of masterpiece, like “The Lady Eve,” but it was agreeable enough.  It could have used some fresh ideas.  I would rate the movie slightly below “The Kids Are All Right.”  I was rather glad that I saw it.  I returned home to watch “Can-Can” and a Joan Baez television special.  She and Paul Simon sang “The Boxer.”  Some of the people who died on June 12 include Norma Shearer (1983), Gregory Peck (2003), and Don Herbert (2007).  Today is a birthday for Jim Nabors (86), George Bush (92), and David Rockefeller (101).  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for June 12, police raided a hospital room where Billie Holiday was being treated, and they found heroin and charged her with illegal possession of narcotics.  In 1965, The Beatles were awarded the MBE.  Also in 1965, the Rolling Stones’ single “Satisfaction” was released in the United States.  In 1981, “Raiders of the Lost Ark” was released.

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