Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sushi sardines

Sardines play a part in the 2014 film St. Vincent (dir. Theodore Melfi). Taking on some impromptu work in afterschool childcare, grouchy old Vincent (Bill Murray) prepares a meal of canned fish and crackers for the kid next door, Oliver (Jaeden Lieberher). “You’re gettin’ sushi,” Vincent says. But Oliver knows better. Click any image for a larger view.

[One: Locate sardines and crackers. The rectangle top right said to me sardines, maybe . I was hoping.]

[Two: Arrange into festive platter. Add hot sauce.]

[Three: Pour fishy liquid from can into glass. For what? Dipping the crackers? Who in their right mind — filmmakers, that was so tacky.]

[Four: All gone, or nearly so.]

The food is all for Oliver. Vincent sticks to whiskey. As we later learn, he buys sardines for himself and “gourmet cat food” for his, uh, cat. And that’s just one example of his saintliness.

With Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy, and Naomi Watts on board, St. Vincent could have been a much more engaging film. As it is, the story is painfully predictable. (For crying out loud: the title gives it away.) The moment when I knew the film was beyond redemption: a wheelchair race through hospital hallways. Unforgivable.

But there are sardines.

Related reading
All OCA sardine posts (Pinboard)

comments: 4

Geo-B said...

I agree, a rare miss for Bill Murray. If you have to phone it in, no one phones it in like Bill Murray (Naomi Watts was hilarious as a Russian stripper), but a lack of imagination.

Fresca said...

Such a disappointing movie.

(Naomi Watts was hilarious, I agree, but what a cringingly clichéd role. Boo.)

The only part I liked was the end credits, with Bill M watering his "lawn".

Are you supposed to drink the sardine juice? Gag.
Still... hot sauce. That seems good.

Chris said...

This reminds me of the Louis de Bernières short story entitled "Labels," which is about a man who becomes so poor that he's reduced to eating cat food out of his cupboard. After a little experimenting, he discovers that the result can be quite palatable, starts repackaging and marketing the contents for human consumption, and eventually becomes rich.

Michael Leddy said...

Thanks, everyone, for the comments.

Chris, that story is eerily reminiscent of the Honeymooners episode “A Dog’s Life.” Kranmar’s Delicious Mystery Appetizer becomes a big hit, at least until someone realizes that it’s dog food.