Monday, August 23, 2010

Movie Review - Eat, Pray, Love

First, a disclaimer:  I LOVED this book.  I mean I really, really loved it. It spoke to a part of me that, at the time, desperately needed to hear about such a journey -- about pleasure, spirituality and learning to love again in a deeply passionate way. Aren't those the best books: the ones that reach deep into your marrow and make you want to change?!

Just so no one gets confused: at no point have I considered leaving my husband or marriage. That part did not speak to me at all. But we've all felt broken in one way or another. I think child-rearing has done that to me at times -- I have both lost myself and found myself in it. It's that sort of journey that intrigues me. That speaks to me. And makes me want to read the book over and over again.  

So, that is how I felt about the book.     

Now, for the movie

I thoroughly enjoyed the movie.  I adore Julia Roberts and, quite frankly, think she can do no wrong. Add in a dash of James Franco and a measure Javier Bardem and who would complain. Certainly not me. 

And the movie was beautiful in a cinematic sense -- beautiful landscapes, beautiful cities, beautiful people and, of course, beautiful food.  
Oh, the food!  Do not go hungry.  
Liz's journey is an inspiring one. She is brave and courageous and wants to be a better person. She wants more out of life than the cliche white picket fence and 2.5 children. She is willing to admit that she craves happiness, but yet, has not found it in the traditional or readily prescribed manner. 

And so her journey begins: first to Italy, then India, and finally, Indonesia. Each segment was wonderful in its own individual way, though each left me wanting more. 

Where the movie falls short, in my view, can be simply put: depth. I wanted big dramatic moments (hello - the bathroom scene was incredibly intense in the book, but underwhelming in the movie). I wanted to hear Elizabeth Gilbert's witty writing. I wanted to understand the transformation. I wanted to be inspired by her newfound spirituality. I wanted to feel her passion when she learned to love again. I wanted . . . the book. That's it. I just loved the book too much to also love anything that falls short of it.

It is a darling movie and if you have not read the book, I imagine you'll love it. If you have read the book, simply prepare yourself. It is a great movie but does not provide the cathartic experience found in the book. 
And, in the end, this should be no surprise. 


Cathy said...

I haven't read the book yet. I really want to see the movie. Now that I've read your review, I want to see it even more. What a great blog you've got here! I'm a new follower from blog frog!

Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! said...

Thank you, Cathy! You will love the movie!

Anonymous said...

Love to talk to you about this ... hey, I will get to see you often :) We must catch up soon!!!!! Kirsten

Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! said...

Sounds great, Kirsten. I'm glad we have a class in common again!

Anonymous said...

I try as hard as I can not to see the movies of books I love. I am always inevitably disappointed. And, if the writer's voice is truly absent as you say, then I'm definitely going to avoid the movie. Maybe I'll just read the book again instead. :-)

Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! said...

I too plan to read the book again. I was wondering yesterday after I wrote this if possibly I was building the book up in my head -- had it really been as good as I remembered?!?! It has been years since I read it.

Colleen (Shibley Smiles) said...

We are going to see this with a bunch of girls Friday.

Following from FMBT


Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! said...

You will have a blast. It is a fun movie for a girls' night out!

Thanks for following. I'll join you shortly!

Ms. Diva said...

I think I was the only one in the world that could not get through the book! But I want to see the movie! Go figure.

Eat. Live. Laugh. and sometimes shop! said...

Isn't that how it always is - someone LOVEs it and someone else HATEs it. You can never really trust that another's review will be applicable to you!

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