Thursday, March 21, 2013

Episode Eight (All About Eve / Almost Famous)

All About Eve (1950)

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Writer: Joseph L. Mankiewicz (screenplay)
Stars: Bette Davis, Anne Baxter, George Sanders

If not the single greatest script of all time, All About Eve certainly earns itself a spot in that conversation. Featuring a solid story with stellar dialogue, the film plays out as a nearly constant exchange of verbal barbs, which makes for great drama and humor. Some might accuse the dialogue of being a little too perfect and witty, thereby stripping the characters and situations of their reality. However, considering the nature of these characters as actors and writers (along with the simple fact that it is so much fun to watch), I'm entirely willing to disregard that particular complaint. Fantastic performances all around - especially from Bette Davis whose turn as an aging star is probably the best of her career. Plus, the mere presence of George Sanders in a film will automatically boost its score by at least a point in my book. Absolutely amazing movie.

Score: 10 / 10

Director: Cameron Crowe
Writer: Cameron Crowe
Stars: Billy Crudup, Frances McDormand, Kate Hudson

The film plays best when it is going for funny and heartwarming - the times when it goes for drama are the times where it starts to fall flat. I don't particularly care for Fugit in the central role - in fact, I'd almost rather remove his character altogether and just follow the band, except that this would mean we wouldn't get to enjoy McDormand playing the eccentric, overprotective mom, who is a definite highlight of the film for me. Guess I'm just going to have to deal. Hudson and the soundtrack are phenomenal and the film does a great job of recreating the feeling of the period in which is is set. Oh, and that "Tiny Dancer" scene is indeed great.

Score: 6 / 10

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