Elizabethtown


Directed by: Cameron Crowe
Written by:Cameron Crowe
Starring: Orlando Bloom, Kirsten Dunst, Susan Sarandon, Alec Baldwin, Bruce McGill, Judy Greer
Released: November 3, 2005
Grade: C+

Drew Baylor (Bloom) is about to kill himself.  He has reconfigured his exercise bike so that when he sits on it, a sharp knife will stab him in the something.  Why, you may ask?  You see, Drew had invented a revolutionary new shoe which looked set to make him millions.  The company he works put it into production only to see every single shoe recalled due to a major defect (which is never explained).  It is a “fiasco” and the head of the company, Phil DeVoss (Baldwin), tells Drew that he’s cost the firm close to one billion dollars.

I’m not sure whether Drew would have gone through with his suicide but the option is taken away when he gets a phone call from his sister, Heather (Greer).  She tells him that their father has died.  Drew’s parents are separated and his mother (Sarandon) can’t handle organising the funeral arrangements.  She has asked Drew to go to his dad’s home in Elizabethtown as the family’s representative.

On the plane, he unwillingly talks to Claire Colburn (Dunst), an overfriendly flight attendant who gives Drew her number.  Bored one night in Elizabethtown, he calls Claire and they share an epic telephone conversation which goes all night long.  Within a day, she’s spending the night at his hotel room and romance is blossoming.

That’ll do for my overview of the plot which was difficult to put together.  I had trouble following the storyline and found Orlando Bloom to be a very dislikeable character.  Director Cameron Crowe shows continual close-ups of Bloom’s face and he always has this strained, puzzled look.  I didn’t understand him at all.  Why doesn’t he have any friends?  Why is he such a loner?  Why is he the fall-guy for the problem at work?  Why am I supposed to care about him?

At no stage did I connect with this film.  It felt disjointed and I didn’t know what the focus of the story was supposed to be.  Are they trying to tell us to live each moment as if it were your last?  What’s with all the subplots?  Director Cameron Crowe (Almost Famous) is usually great at selecting a movie soundtrack but he’s gone over-the-top with Elizabethtown.  There are numerous musical montages that might mean something to him but they meant little to me.  The final 20 minutes was worst of all.

I’ve run out of energy to continue.  This film just sapped it right out of me.