Diaries Magazine

Movie Mondays: Somewhere

Posted on the 20 June 2011 by Shawndrarussell
Sofia Coppola's Somewhere kept popping into my radar in the past few week's, once on John August's blog which I read faithfully, as a trailer when we rented something else, and in a review. I try to pay attention to synchronicity in threes or more, so I felt compelled to watch and rent this film. I went in with the expectation that it would be artsy since it's from Coppola, which it definitely is. I also wanted to watch it because on the John August blog I mentioned, someone asked if a new screenwriter could get away with a script that short--I think it was only 44 pages--since most screenplays are over 100 pages (mine is clocking in at 175 which alas is too long and needs to be edited down a little). I wanted to see how a 44 page screenplay translated on the screen, and my answer is very little dialogue, lots of setting and quiet scenes. This was useful for me to think about because my screenplay is almost all words (duh, but I may need to add in a few more "just setting" type scenes).
This movie is well-done and gives a behind-the-scene glimpse at how lonely the life of a "celebrity" can be. Partying with people that you don't even know or care what their name is, calling hookers/strippers to come perform in his hotel, sleeping with an up-and-coming actress across the hall after only speaking for about ten seconds, having "yes men" surrounding you...it is a very dismal, depressing view of the celebrity world. I can see now why a lot of people in Hollywood rush into marriage to combat the loneliness.
On top of this, being an absentee parent and how that affects your children is also analyzed. Deep, dark, yet hopeful at the end (I think?!), I like the microscopic focus on the life of a celebrity which is so often glamorized and wished for when in reality, life can be pretty crappy for anyone. Coppola seems to suggest that we get the life we deserve and at the root of it all is the question, "Are you a good person?" You should be able to answer a resounding "yes," and if you can't, do something about it.
P.S. Dakota Fanning's little sis is the child in the film, and she does a knock-out job--giggling, cooking, crying, and overall being very poised and playing the "together" child with the out-of-control parents yet there is a layer of vulnerability to her and just a hint of entitlement (which really isn't her fault growing up as her character does).

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