|Paramount Pictures | Release Date: October 14, 2005||CRITIC SCORE DISTRIBUTION|
Only a truly great director can make a film of high artistic merit, filled with personality and memorable scenes, that's still a borderline disaster. (Think One From The Heart or 1941.) So the heartfelt and woefully miscalculated Elizabethtown may be the film that marks Cameron Crowe's arrival as a truly great director. Read full review
Think of Elizabethtown as Cameron Crowe's rambling amateur travelogue, one from a well-liked professional filmmaker momentarily so distracted by private notes scrawled on his souvenir map that he gets lost en route to telling his story of self-renewal. This undershaped, overlong warmedy is an homage to the memory of his late father. Read full review
For all sort of reasons, I was disappointed that there is barely anything of Bruce McGill as the family's hearty swindler. And there is too much of Sarandon, whose big scene--a speech at her late husband's memorial service, complete with jokes and a tap dance--is the movie's most egregious misfire. Read full review
Crowe is attempting a modern screwball comedy--the kind of thing that, sixty years ago, Howard Hawks, directing Gary Cooper and Barbara Stanwyck, would have turned into romantic farce--but he has scaled the movie as an epic and turned his gabby heroine into a fount of New Age wisdom. Read full review
A saga of static set pieces and strenuously clever notions, this is a fiasco of a film if ever there was one.
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