Starring: Julia Roberts, James Franco, Javier Bardem (they all start with "J")
I of course am one of those people that likes to read books before seeing the movie, if in fact the book is to become a movie. The book was hard to read...biographies are not my forte of book to read. it had it's ups and downs, it wasn't bad, but it wasn't a book that I could sink myself into, sadly.
Having said that, the movie was...in my opinion...not worse then the book, but not 100% better either. The movie got off to a slow and rocky start. There were times when the acting seemed forced as well, which was painful and considering we are dealing with Julia Roberts here, I was a little let down. But the remainder of the movie she did have some redeeming moments where you could believe she was the character and that she wasn't obviously acting.
The book had a lot of material to cover and at times the movie felt rushed, but it would have been impossible to get all of it in a 2 hour movie. The important parts were covered. The concept of the movie at times felt fictional. While this movie is based on a true story, it's hard to believe and somewhat impractical. Elizabeth Gilbert is an extremely fortunate woman in that she was able to go out and heal and truly discover who she really is. This is a luxury most people going through a painful divorce can not afford.
There were a few times when I connected with Elizabeth. I have this strong desire to travel and see the world. And, like her, I am a waiter. I wait for things to happen instead of making them happen myself. (this is something I am fully aware of and trying to work on) I share her sense of fear. It was a great thing that she was able to put her fear aside and grab life by the horns and go and find herself. it's a very brave and admirable thing to do.
Without a doubt my favorite part of the movie was when she was spending her time in Italy. Of course that has nothing to do with the fact that I am 50% Italian/50% Sicilian. The scenery, the food and the people made me want to go to Italy even more then I already want to go. I love the buildings, the Italian people's outlook on life and the brick roads. One of my favorite lines from the Italian portion was when one of the characters, Luca Spaghetti, says that americans do not know how to do nothing, in Italian "la dolcezza di fale nothinh". I find this quote to be 100% true. We are always on the go, we are always rushing and we do not always stop and enjoy the small things or really embrace just how delicate life is, until it is too late. The other two countries she visited India and Bali were both rich in culture and scenery. There was a definite sense of deja vu for Julia Robert's character when she watched her young Indian friend, who wanted so much to go out and experience the wold and become educated, get married. You could see in her eyes that she felt trapped and that Roberts could feel her pain. They had a very special friendship! I enjoyed Ketut immensely. It's weird to think that there is someone out there that can "see" the future. And I enjoyed Javier Bardem's character as well. He was so relaxed and easy going, it came off in a sexy way. I loved seeing them together, they had some chemistry!!!
It's no secret that this movie has a spiritual vibe. Spirituality is a very personal thing and not all people are comfortable discussing it or being in the presence of people who discuss it. I have spiritual moments so a few of the quotes from the movie resonated with me, or rather stuck out. One: "God dwells within you as you" and the other "sometimes to lose balance for love is part of living a balanced life (Ketut)". There are more blurbs from the book I liked as well.
Overall the movie ended much better that I expected it would based on the way it started.