Monday, November 19, 2007

Week 23: Naomi Watts Extravaganza Film Fiesta Part 1: The Painted Veil

[reader: through some cosmic coincidence, we have two movies in our queue back-to-back starring Naomi Watts. We are therefore honoring her with the first ever Naomi Watts Extravaganza Film Fiesta, beginning with the Painted Veil and ending with Mulholland Drive. Plan your parties accordingly.]

The Painted Veil (based on the W. Somerset Maugham story) is one of those movies that snuck in and out of the theaters without a lot of fanfare. And rightly so. It’s the story of a marriage being lost and found in the middle of a cholera epidemic. The filming and settings in mainland China are lovely. But I have a feeling that a year from now, I won’t be able to remember any of the details. I’ll be saying to myself, “I think it was set in Taiwan and was about the black plague. No, no…that’s not right. It was definitely Japan and everyone had polio…”

For this first part of our Naomi Watts Extravaganza Film Fiesta, we found ourselves thinking it was weird that she resembles Nicole Kidman so much in this film, even though they look nothing alike in real life. When that’s the most interesting part of the movie, you know you’re in for trouble.

I wish I had more to say on the subject, but like I said, there’s nothing very remarkable about the film. Edward Norton has a terribly nasal rendition of a British accent and Naomi Watts spends a lot of time being indignant. In summary, our Naomi Watts Extravaganza Film Fiesta has started off with a blah instead of a bang. This is turning out to be just as successful as our Kevin Spacey Spectacular of 2002.

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