Review 132: Blue Jasmine (2013)
Working my way through Woody Allen movies slowly, I decided to throw in the Blue Jasmine Blu-ray I got a few months back. I didn’t know much about the film other than it had a lot of names I’m familiar with and that Cate Blanchett won the Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role. I wasn’t really pulled into this film and I’m not sure if I went in expecting a comedy or if my head just wasn’t into such a dramatic film, but I feel that Blue Jasmine is worthy of the Decent Watch rating.
What exactly is Blue Jasmine about?
Jasmine (Blanchett) is a New York socialite that has been deeply troubled since her husband killed himself in prison after being prosecuted for fraud. Her entire world was wrecked and she finds herself leaving her life of luxury and moving to a small apartment with her sister (Sally Hawkins) and her nephews in San Francisco.
Cate Blanchett and Sally Hawkins are the highlights of the film. Both give really great performances, but neither really grabbing me into their story. Jasmine is a clearly broken character, but there are elements that I’m not sure about. It seems she’s not telling the entire truth ever in the film and while that is interesting in some ways it’s also allowed me to stay detached from the character. Is she still richer than she let on? How involved with the fraud was she? How crazy is she at this point?
Ginger (Hawkins) was the character that I was rooting for. She is depicted as a women who always chooses the wrong kind of man. I kept hoping she would learn her lesson and change her ways so she could finally be truly happy. Yet, that’s not really what we get. Other solid performances include Alec Baldwin, Louis C.K., Andrew Dice Clay, Peter Sarsgaard, and Bobby Cannavale.
The plot of this film just didn’t do it for me. Unlike Allen’s other films I’ve seen so far, there’s no comedy in this one. That is something I definitely didn’t know going in as I have always heard about Allen as a comedic writer. There is definitely drama in this film, but it is a character piece and I wasn’t able to get into the character we were studying. I don’t fault either party though, I think this one just doesn’t’ resonate with me. It’s hard to feel bad for the rich white lady who lost everything and went crazy.
The film is well made and well acted, but in the end it just wasn’t something I could connect to. I think some people could really love this movie, but if you’re of a similar mind as myself then it’s probably best to just avoid it. Blanchett is in lots of other films that we can splurge on her talent that maybe will hold my attention a bit better.