What do The Bridges of Madison County and It’s Complicated have in common? Why, Meryl Streep, of course! I watched both films last week. Here are my thoughts on each.
The Bridges of Madison County(1995). Okay, apparently I was the only romance lover on the planet who hadn’t seen this movie. I remedied that over the weekend. The verdict is: I liked it a lot. It stars Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep. Up until I saw this movie, I’d never understood all the hooplah about Meryl as an actress. Now I understand. I think what’s special about her is that her speech and mannerisms are so believable. I totally bought her as a housewife and mother who immigrated to Iowa from Italy. She had real chemistry with Eastwood. The story is about one weekend in which a housewife’s husband and children go away on a mini vacation. She’s home alone when Eastwood’s character shows up. He’s a photographer who’s looking for a covered bridge in the area. She volunteers to take him to the bridge. They fall in love. Her dilemma is whether she should stay with her family or follow her heart. My favorite scene is the one where she is riding with her husband in their car. Her lover is in the truck ahead of them. She puts her hand on the door handle. Will she jump out and run to the lover or stay in the car with the husband? It was suspenseful and heartbreaking. Meryl turned on the waterworks, and it touched me.
It’s Complicated (2009). Okay, so I watched a second Meryl Streep film this week. It really sucked compared to The Bridges of Madison County. It’s Complicated is the story of a woman whose husband left her ten years ago for a younger, hotter woman. In the present, the ex-wife and the ex-husband get drunk and end up in the sack together.Thus begins an affair in which the ex-husband cheats on his current wife with his ex-wife. Alec Baldwin plays the ex-husband/adulterer/pig. Meryl Streep plays the ex-wife/I-think-I-may-be-falling-for-the-man-who-broke-my-heart-before character. There are two things I hated about this movie. The first was that I felt like there was too much going back and forth. Will they get back together or not? Will he leave his wife or not? Will their children find out or not? Will Alec Baldwin show some decency by covering up his hairy chest and naked ass or not? By the time it ended, I didn’t really care. Also, I hate the children in this film. The children belong to the ex-wife and ex-husband, and they are the product of the broken marriage. The kids are sooooo Leave it to Beaver. In fact, they aren’t even kids. They’re adults with prolonged stages of adolescence. There are three of them. The youngest daughter is in college, the son just graduated college, and the oldest daughter is planning her wedding. You would think that these kids have lives of their own, however, they do not. Instead, they are so concerned with whether or not their parents are having sex that they crawl into bed together and weep. WTF? One of the little pansies even tells their mom that she hasn’t gotten over the divorce yet. What?! They’ve been divorced ten years! Please move on.