17. The Hudsucker Proxy (1994)

Roger's Rating :

Should be :

In his review Roger gave this great movie only two stars. He was a little confused by the movie. He had a debate with himself and justified the two stars by saying "the angel advised me to give The Hudsucker Proxy four stars, and the Devil, whispering that the Coens are talented but need to be prodded to go beyond their technical mastery, wickedly advised me to cut them off with zero. Having weighed all their advice, I have taken a middle position. " I don't think I would like Roger to grade my English essay. Being unable to decide if it was brilliant or rubbish he decides to give it a 50.

Roger feels that the story is mostly style with little substance. That may be true, but as an homage to the screwball comedies of the thirties (particularly to Capra's Mr. Smith, Mr. Deeds, It's a Wonderful Life and Meet John Doe) it is tremendously entertaining to people who love movies.

As an homage, the movie was less concerned with developing its own plots then it was with referencing the plots and styles of those great movies of the past. Watching the movie you keep thinking that you have seen this scene before, and you have, but it was in a movie that was made over fifty years before.

I think the movie would not have rung true if they had paid more attention to substance. The story of a business man needing to have a heart to be happy was nowhere as interesting as the sights and sounds we experience in The Hudsucker Proxy.

I think Roger should have listened to the Angel on his shoulder when he was writing the review of this great movie.

At The Movies Review


Unknown said...

Thank you for this criticism of his review! The Hudsucker Proxy is (to me) such an incredibly charming movie, and it's a pity that it was so badly received by critics. It outshines their later work in every respect.

I love your blog! It's quite cool. :)

Anonymous said...

I agree with Ebert's review.

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