Saturday, August 8, 2009

Julie & Julia

Elaine and I went to see Julie & Julia today. It’s a wonderful film, full of cooking (really?), enthusiasm, friendship, high spirits, laughter, love, perseverance, and a few tears. It’s a surprisingly sexy movie, with Julia and Paul Child (Meryl Streep and Stanley Tucci) and Julie and Eric Powell (Amy Adams and Chris Messina) sharing meals at their respective tables and falling (not graphically) into their respective beds. A few random thoughts:

Meryl Streep as Julia Child is fantastic. Nina and Tim Zagat, who knew Child, agree: “We knew Julia over the years and Streep captured her in every nuance — so much so that from now on, people are likely to remember Streep playing Julia as the real Julia.” Yipes!

As David Frauenfelder has pointed out, Amy Adams seems to be channeling Meg Ryan in this film. The computer-screen closeups with voiceovers (as Powell writes blog posts) recall You’ve Got Mail. Nora Ephron of course wrote and directed both films.

A great bit of dialogue about blogging that I wrote down in the dark: “It’s like being in AA. It gives you something you have to do every day, one day at a time.” Yes, it’s funny because it’s true.

A prediction: sales of Le Creuset cookware are gonna boom. In our kitchen we have a red French oven and equally red pan. They’re going on eight months old. Best cookware ever. And for anyone doing a Google search for brand of cookware used in julia child movie, that’s it, Le Creuset.

One more thought: I’ve read through a dozen or so posts from Julie Powell’s blog The Julie/Julia Project, and I’m not impressed. Chatty, slapdash, too LiveJournal for me. For instance:

We followed the strength of our convictions and went with the Chinese food, then took it back to the apartment and ate it on the floor in front of the TV while drinking vodka tonics and watching the first three episodes of Buffy on DVD.
Uh, no, thanks. I’m a good audience for Nora Ephron’s movie, not for Julie Powell’s blog (or book). Three cheers for Nora Ephron.

A related post
Cabbage soup (A “veganed” version of a Julia Child recipe)

[I’ve corrected the movie’s title, which has an ampersand, not and.]

comments: 5

Geo-B said...

My new favorite movie.

T. said...

Looking forward to seeing this with Anali next week! :)

dfrauenfelder said...

As to the quality of Julie Powell's blog posts-- it was 2002 and I'm pretty sure hers was among the best at the time. 7 years has created a lot of evolution in blogs, IMO.

I love LeCreuset and definitely noticed it in the flick. Fortunately I am affiliated with a woman who has much of this cookware already.

And I can't believe you took notes on the movie in the dark. I would NEVER do that. What do you think you are, some kind of citizen JOURNALIST? Seriously, nice post on a movie that is surprising in its ability to hit notes and ring true.

Michael Leddy said...

It looks like Amazon can count on at least four orders for the DVD. : )

David, I didn’t mean to diss Julie Powell’s blog, though I did quote a passage that probably looks awful. I just don’t think I’m a good reader for what she was writing. There are certainly many “academic” blogs right now (by pseudonymous “profs”) similar to what JP was writing then.

“Citizen journalist” made me laugh out loud. Yes, I bring an index card and a pen to the movies, just in case I want to write something down. But it’s not a flashlight pen, I swear!

brownstudy said...

What struck me was that, had their positions been reversed -- if Julie was in Paris at that time instead of Julia -- she'd have curled up into a little ball and died. She just didn't have Julia's strength of character.