Thursday, August 13, 2009

Julia Childs and the Blogger

My wife and I saw the movie yesterday and enjoyed it. For anyone who hasn't, see the movie then read this LA Times piece by the guy who asked Julia for her reaction to Julie's blog.
The critics have often dissed the Amy Adams character, saying she's self-centered and whines. That's true in the movie, but as a fellow blogger I couldn't complain, I identified with her.

Ezra Klein offers a perceptive comment:

"Grand Rapids, Mich.: What is your take on "Julie and Julia"? I thought the movie was fun, and enjoyed the scenes with Julia Child and her husband (their relationship was interesting). But I found Julie's side of the story to be less interesting and, at times, poorly constructed.

Ezra Klein: Nora Ephron did Julie Powell a disservice. Powell's story is banal in a respectable way: She's underemployed, bored, and young, and she discovers a passion. That doesn't normally merit a movie. But since it did in this case, Ephron had to give the character a conflict. And that conflict was that she was a self-absorbed child.

Take all the stuff about Julia Child "teaching" Powell so much. Child taught her nothing except how to make food. it was Powell who woke up at 5:30am to cook. Powell who kept to a grueling schedule. Powell who kept the blog updated. Powell who developed an appealing writing voice. Powell who didn't stop cooking when she was tired or busy. But in the movie, Powell just gives all credit to Julia, and the movie is constructed to make that plausible. The pity is that it isn't plausible, and it doesn't need to be. The parallel between Child and Powell isn't that they both cook. It's that they found passions. And while it's very good at explaining why Child loved French cuisine, it's too interested in explaining why Powell loved Child to explain why Powell loved writing."


Lisa Stone said...

I like Amy Adams and I Love Meryl Streep, so I am looking forward to seeing the movie.

Bill Harshaw said...

Paul Krugman and wife also enjoyed it--has an amusing post on his blog at NYTimes.

Anonymous said...

Thank you. I'm kind of sick of all the Powell bashing. Just based on the movie I think Powell was treated unfairly, least of all by Child herself, when she had apparently become a crabby uptight old lady, with absolutely no grasp of generation gaps. And Powell's massochistic devotion to Child seemed all the sadder. Engrossing movie. One of those increasingly rare movies that you leave the theatre still thinking about. However the Streep and Child worship is just too much for my tastes.

And hello, since when isn't finding a passion movie worthy? What the hell was the Julia Child portion everyone's gushing about, about then?

And just a side comment, I know Streep is the greatest actor, ever, supposedly, but why does she look like she's about to cry in every single movie? Seriously.