Sunday, March 11, 2007

Marie Antoinette - Was there a Point?

Ever since I saw the first preview, I wanted to see Marie Antoinette. The preview convinced me that although it would be a movie filled with rich people having fun and wearing expensive clothes, it would still have an interesting story to tell about the title character.

However, I was sadly mistaken. Halfway through the movie I was ready for it to end; my roommate, who had seen it the night before, laughed that I didn't make it as far into the movie as she did. Luckily it was a rented DVD, so I just hit the fast forward button until it looked like they were talking or advancing the storyline. I contribute my ability to get to the end of the movie to the ability to fast forward at a designated speed.

Granted, I tend to get easily impatient with movies; I know a movie is good if I can manage to sit through it without constantly checking my watch for the last half. Or fast-forwarding, if it's rented. Much of Marie Antoinette was only reinforcing the fact that she was a spoiled woman, who did what she wanted and spent money she didn't have. So many facts about the real person were only barely noticeable, assuming the viewer was already aware of them (like the fact that she never wore the same dress twice). Much of the movie was just watching her lie around, or play games. Of course, the first third of the movie had the tension of whether or not she would convince her husband to consummate the marriage, but this part of the plot can only hold a viewer's attention for so long.

After they have a child is a good point to begin fast-forwarding until the end. The rest of the movie after this point is just Marie and her friends having fun. Much of the movie doesn't even have dialogue; although many movies can tell a great story without a large amount of dialogue (Amelie, anyone?), this one merely stagnates. There is an interesting love scene though, so if you want to see Kirsten Dunst without many clothes on this part of the movie will help you in that respect.

I did enjoy seeing all of the costumes designed for the movie, so if you are interested in old clothing then the movie will be fun throughout. Other than the exciting dresses, shoes, and hats (I wish I could wear a boat in my hair!), the last 30 minutes (maybe less?) has actual excitement as the French Revolution begins. If only more of the movie concentrated on this one part!

Another problem I have with the movie is the fact that Marie seems like a completely clueless but possibly extremely nice person. Her personality comes off as almost non-existent, except for the few times it seems that she enjoys thrills that save her from her "boring" life. Her husband seems like a dolt, but at least the character seems to have a little depth.

Why did I spent part of my Saturday evening watching this movie?

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