Love in the Time of Suck

Last night, after playing some Guitar Hero–

I played base while Jamie Bono played guitar. If you consider that he probably hit 100% of his notes and we averaged 76%, that means that I only sucked about 48% of the time. The other 52% was me rocking out! More than half! More than half! If you do the math and I’m wrong, please spare me. Today I rock!

–a couple of friends and I went to see Love in the Time of Cholera. This is a book I love. This is a book I recommend to people I care for. This is a book that means something to me.

The movie, on the other hand, is hilariously awful. John Leguizamo (who I imagined they put in because he’s Colombian) stumbled through a horrible performance. I feel like they just had to give him a part in the movie, a speaking part, and they figured he would do the least damage??

I understand why they began the movie with Liev Schriber. Because his is the least contrived of all performances and fake accents for that matter (Obviously the native Spanish speakers’ accents were not contrived.) Benjamin Bratt delivered an accent reminiscent of Monty Python and a performance that screamed “Acting! Look! I’m Acting!”

Emily and Brad started laughing when a distraught widow throws herself into Javier Bardem’s Florentino’s arms. (I’m into possessives today.) It looked like a terrible soap opera. Later, we talked about this scene over a few beers. We decided at one point that Julie Taymor suited the project more so than Mike Newell. Not that I didn’t enjoy Four Weddings and a Funeral.

Javier Bardem and Giovanna Mezzogiorno (meaning, unless my Italian is worse than I think, “Giovanna Mid-day,” which is a nice name if you like lunch, and I like lunch) acted well, but were directed poorly. I can see Mike Newell on stage screaming “you’re a sulking but sexy quasimodo.” And Javier Bardem died a little. You can see it in his eyes.

Giovanna Mezzogiorno glows, she’s pretty. And Catalina Sandino Moreno is wasted as a fat, horny cousin. Hector Elizondo rocks his mutton chops and delivers the only intentionally and successfully funny scene in the film. Hooray, Hector Elizondo!

Cartagena is gorgeous, rendered exquisitely on the screen. Colombia is beautiful. It’s too bad that Mike Newell doesn’t let the city play a bigger part.

It’s too bad that every frame looked like it had been filmed by a robot. It’s too bad that Shakira (whom I love) ruins the soundtrack. It’s too bad that the screenplay ruins the movie (Captain to owner of shipping company: “I command this ship. But you command me.”)(Girl to Husband: “I don’t want a lesson in medicine.” Husband to Girl: “This is a lesson in love.”). It’s too bad mustaches cannot be nominated for Best Actor.

Well, that’s something at least: The mustaches are great.