Friday, December 27, 2013

Blue Jasmine - A movie review

For those of you who came in late, Blue Jasmine is a contemporary 'A Streetcar Named Desire'!

Like Blanche DuBois, Jasmine is a fading, but still-attractive woman who has lost everything in life and seeks solace in her sister's home in San Francisco. Like Blanche, she is an alcoholic and a nervous-wreck and like Blanche, Jasmine is delusional and refuses to accept the reality of life.But unlike Blanche, Jasmine's past was luxurious and extravagant , hosting lavish parties where New York city's socialites rubbed shoulders.

The movie pivots on Cate Blanchett.Sometimes a suave high-society and other times a nervous wreck surviving on Xanax, Cate plays the part as beautifully as Viven Leigh in 'A Streetcar..'.
We are mesmerized by this Berkin bag carrying woman whose past in the upper echelons of society she cannot let go. Her sister Ginger is portrayed with sincerity by Sally Hawkins. Affectionate but timid, Ginger tolerates Jasmine's hysteria. Whether commanding her boys to keep it down or asking her boyfriend to leave so that Jasmine can concentrate on her computer course, Ginger is supportive of Jasmine.But, Jasmine is ashamed and embarassed of Ginger's dull and mundane working-class life.

You want to hate this woman whose big dreams of going back to a rich life are meaningless especially since she has no education or basic computer knowledge. But you only end up feeling pity for her mental unbalance and histrionics.

There is a scene where Jasmine describes working in a shoe store serving the same women she had entertained with grand parties. This scene is created so well with a narrative that one can't help but applaud the greatness of Woody Allen, the director.
Do not expect to be entertained with the typical Woody-esque jokes, instead it is an intense drama not seen since Crimes and Misdemenours.

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