Notebook movie review essay

Ryan Gosling has already been identified as one of the best actors of his generation, although usually in more hard-edged material. Rachel McAdams, who just a few months ago was the bitchy high school queen in " Mean Girls ," here shows such beauty and clarity that we realize once again how actors are blessed by good material. As for Gena Rowlands and James Garner: They are completely at ease in their roles, never striving for effect, never wanting us to be sure we get the message. Garner is an actor so confident and sure that he makes the difficult look easy, and loses credit for his skill. Consider how simply and sincerely he tells their children: "Look, guys, that's my sweetheart in there." Rowlands, best-known for high-strung, even manic characters, especially in films by her late husband, here finds a quiet vulnerability that is luminous.

HP should be commended for bringing something different to the table in terms of a multimedia notebook convertible. You certainly won’t find any cool options like this from Dell. While the Tablet PC functionality of the tx1000 isn’t outstanding, it can be useful and it’s a nice bonus for a notebook that’s strong even if you were to take away the touchscreen feature. Just being able to rotate the screen for presenting and viewing movies has its benefits. The looks of this machine are great and it’s easy to carry around. The processor isn’t the best out there and a magnesium built warrior this notebook is not, but overall the tx1000 is a winner that’s really going to appeal to students and other mainstream users.

''The Notebook'' is rated PG-13 (Parents strongly cautioned). It has sexual situations.

THE NOTEBOOK

Directed by Nick Cassavetes; written by Jer emy Leven and adapted by Jan Sardi, based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks; director of photography, Robert Fraisse; edited by Alan Heim; music by Aaron Zigman; production designer, Sarah Knowles; produced by Mark Johnson and Lynn Harris; released by New Line Cinema. Running time: 121 minutes. This film is rated PG-13.

WITH: Ryan Gosling (Noah Calhoun), Rachel McAdams (Allie Hamilton), James Garner (Duke), Gena Rowlands (Allie Calhoun), James Marsden (Lon), Kevin Connolly (Fin), Sam Shepard (Frank Calhoun) and Joan Allen (Anne Hamilton).

There’s an epicene Nazi officer ( Ulrich Thomsen ) who is of course a pedophile. There’s a neighbor girl with a hairlip ( Orsolya Toth ), who predictably mutates from taunting enemy to fast friend. There’s a friendly Jewish craftsman, a corrupt priest and a pro-Nazi young woman who strips the boys, takes them into her bath and masturbates using their feet—the kind of soft kink that’s all but inevitable in a genre that’s built on various sorts of vicarious prurience.

No less standard, there’s a passing invocation of the Holocaust, which takes the form of a scene almost identical to one in last year’s " The Book Thief ," an equally bad but far glossier film: Scores of bedraggled, sad-eyed Jews being shepherded down a village street toward their inescapable doom.

One reason all this adds up to so little is that the twins are flat and uninteresting characters to begin with and they don’t grow as the story unfolds. Ditto for Granny and the other secondary characters. Another problem is that certain incidents in the film are downright unbelievable or risible. These range from a grave that is dug in hard ground in what seems like minutes to a claim that a girl who dies from being raped by marauding soldiers "at least died happy." Really?

Finally, an objection about what happens to the brothers at the end of the film, which I won’t reveal except to say it seems to contradict very basic things we’ve been told about them earlier. Coming out of a screening of the film, this reviewer encountered a group of folks complaining that the ending “makes no sense.” One, however, opined that it was perhaps “symbolic,” which would seem to be the case. Kristof’s novel is actually the first volume of a trilogy in which the two subsequent volumes trace the contrasting fates of the brothers in the post-war period. So the gambit, which sets up the story’s next stages, may have a kind of justifiability as a literary conceit. Yet it flies against the fundamental realism of film, where it’s always a sin to sacrifice common-sense believability and character consistency to high-flown rhetorical “symbolism.”

Notebook movie review essay

notebook movie review essay

There’s an epicene Nazi officer ( Ulrich Thomsen ) who is of course a pedophile. There’s a neighbor girl with a hairlip ( Orsolya Toth ), who predictably mutates from taunting enemy to fast friend. There’s a friendly Jewish craftsman, a corrupt priest and a pro-Nazi young woman who strips the boys, takes them into her bath and masturbates using their feet—the kind of soft kink that’s all but inevitable in a genre that’s built on various sorts of vicarious prurience.

No less standard, there’s a passing invocation of the Holocaust, which takes the form of a scene almost identical to one in last year’s " The Book Thief ," an equally bad but far glossier film: Scores of bedraggled, sad-eyed Jews being shepherded down a village street toward their inescapable doom.

One reason all this adds up to so little is that the twins are flat and uninteresting characters to begin with and they don’t grow as the story unfolds. Ditto for Granny and the other secondary characters. Another problem is that certain incidents in the film are downright unbelievable or risible. These range from a grave that is dug in hard ground in what seems like minutes to a claim that a girl who dies from being raped by marauding soldiers "at least died happy." Really?

Finally, an objection about what happens to the brothers at the end of the film, which I won’t reveal except to say it seems to contradict very basic things we’ve been told about them earlier. Coming out of a screening of the film, this reviewer encountered a group of folks complaining that the ending “makes no sense.” One, however, opined that it was perhaps “symbolic,” which would seem to be the case. Kristof’s novel is actually the first volume of a trilogy in which the two subsequent volumes trace the contrasting fates of the brothers in the post-war period. So the gambit, which sets up the story’s next stages, may have a kind of justifiability as a literary conceit. Yet it flies against the fundamental realism of film, where it’s always a sin to sacrifice common-sense believability and character consistency to high-flown rhetorical “symbolism.”

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