Tag Archives: Richard Jenkins

“THE RUM DIARY”, A REAR-VIEW!

31 Oct

Johnny Depp, Aaron Eckhart, Michael Rispoli, Richard Jenkins, Giovanni Ribisi, and Amber Jenkins. Directed by Bruce Robinson.

Late at night, after putting the kids to sleep, and after a day full of Sponge Bob, ICarly, and the likes, is when my wife and me usually get our only quite and grown up T.V. Time. It was during one of those late nights, when we saw the trailer of the new movie ” The Rum Diary“. The trailer shows a snippet of a scene where Johnny Depp is sitting on top of Michael Rispoli while driving a small blue car. The car, a 1959 Fiat 500, was stripped of its front seats, earlier in the movie by a mob of angry Puerto Ricans, which is why the two had to resort to the ridiculous arrangement of sitting on top of one another in order to be able to drive it. The car was also suffering from an axle problem, which resulted in the funny humping movement that was going on at the time. Though it was funny, but the humor in the trailer was not enough to explain why both my wife and me, frantically jumped of the couch while simultaneously stating: ” we have to see this movie”. That, I give credit for, to Johnny Depp and his incredible ability to create one hell of a loyal fan base. I can assure you, from my conversations with a lot of friends and acquaintances, that a big percentage of viewers who saw the ” The Rum Diary” did so because of Johnny Depp. I guess that’s why they pay him the big bucks. The movie was shot in a very beautiful place, and the cinematography by Darius Wolski, was incredible as usual. The dialogue and script were also amazing. The film was full of those quick and witty lines that were both, outrageously daring, and at times shockingly funny. The casting by Denise Chamian, produced a true dream cast of MVPs, a fact that gave us a chance to witness acting at its best.

As a Johnny Depp loyalist, I really tried to come up with all sorts of excuses and explanations to why I felt like I was watching an episode of some series on HBO, and a pretty incoherent and incomplete one at that, but I just wasn’t able to. So, Mr. Depp I do apologize, but this wasn’t a good movie. If I was to put it into an example, it was like taking a room and painting it a beautiful color, then furnishing it with, a beautiful twisted metal bed, a couple of Victorian lamps, two authentic Spanish night stands, a five thousand dollar stainless steel fridge, a French patio set, and an incredible leather living room set, all within one room. A bunch of beautiful pieces that are incoherent and meaningless. It felt like standing in the cash register line of a grocery store, while listening to a conversation between the couple in front of you, till they reach their turn, leaving you with an incomplete part of whatever they were talking about. If this movie was intended to tell me a story, it really did not. If it was meant to inform me of a certain message, it was message-less. If it was intended to entertain me and make me laugh, it did so when I first heard the obnoxiously funny NEW YORK-ish lines, which soon became very repetitious. When my nine year old son was exploring his funny side, he made a joke that made us all laugh, and then kept repeating it over and over again. He soon realized that it was getting old, so he switched some of the characters involved and some of the words, in the hopes of reviving our dying response. It was still the same joke. A knock knock joke is a knock knock joke whether you say knock knock or you just tell me that some one was knocking a door.

Amber Jenkins, was beautiful, but more beautiful was the great job done by the makeup artists of the movie. Her make up made her skin look so flawless against that red lipstick that if she stood still for a couple of minutes you would have mistaken her for a real life size plastic doll. I think miss Jenkins did a good job, but the challenge was not acting, it was finding a reason for her role to be a part of this movie at all.

Mr. Depp, this movie was not a movie you go to the theaters to watch, but rather one that while sitting on the couch with your wife, lazing around, not really paying much attention to what’s on T.V., and possibly had been making out a few minutes ago while the kids are upstairs sleeping, it comes on and you realize after a while that you have actually watched the whole thing.

On a positive note, the title,” The Rum Diary”, was very much on point and reflective of the main theme of the movie, drinking. Johnny Depp as Mr. Kemp, and his buddy Michael Rispoli as Mr. Sala, literally drank the movie away from beginning to end, in rum. There was so much rum drinking; that in fact the funniest and most interesting act in the movie was that of Moburg, a continuously drunk and obnoxious character played brilliantly by the talented Giovanni Ribisi.

Mr. Depp, I LOVE YOU, and not that I think that you would ever read this review, but if you did, please don’t be upset. Please understand that I loved your acting and your interaction with your buddy stars, yet I was disappointed in the MOVIE as a whole. I do have to say that we the viewers, are uncomfortable when faced with a new kind of movie that does not adhere to our own definition of what a movie is or should be. We feel that movies should have a beginning, a dramatic peak or struggle, and a happy or sad ending. We watch characters that we can associate with, but only dream of living their adventures. ” The Rum Diary” gave us nothing to follow or be mesmerized by, and maybe it was not intended to do so. Maybe it was intended to give us a view of a short period of someone’s real life, and maybe real life is incoherent and at times incomplete. Maybe real life is too boring, and maybe that’s exactly why we go to the movies. Mr. Depp, if this dinky blog ever makes it to you, and if you didn’t get upset at this review that sounds more like a REAR-VIEW of your movie, maybe you would post a comment to help a Johnny Depp loyalist like me, make sense of it all…just maybe!

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