A lot has been made about the latest movie from the Director of The Godfather and Cane, and understandably so. The main reason for this is because The Godfather and Cane was an excellent film that was loved by many, and this newest one certainly looks to be one that has the potential to be just as good.
The movie, “Gilbert Grape”, stars Kevin Spacey (pictured) as the role of the title character, the head of a family of Californian tomato farm workers who has two sons, played by Johnny Depp & Danny Baker.
One of the most anticipated movies of this year is the movie that takes its name from the book that inspired the movie. Before he was a literary figure with his novel, Fight Club, he was a struggling writer who wrote his first novel, Eat, Drink, Woman, with the intention of getting it published. He aimed for a literary novel, but with his typical honesty, couldn’t hide the fact that the book was autobiographical with the inclusion of many of his own childhood experiences.
NUTS FROM GRAPES
Johnny Depp and Leonardo Di Caprio star in the lead roles.
Lasse Hallstrom is the director.
Each book will include amazing tales from my illustrious career.
My new memoir, Veni, Vidi, Vicki!, is already almost 3700 pages long in its rough form. Because my life and great career can’t be addressed in a shorter book, I’m considering a six-volume box set with commemorative covers. My editor, Mayhew Blumengroh, suggests that as a better commercial plan, we start working on a one-volume highlights or compression of the content for the general market. I hate to edit even a single word of my work, but I can see his point of view from a commercial one, since the market for the complete version may be restricted. To give it more visual interest and to stand out from any other multi-volume celebrity biographies that might be hitting Barnes and Noble at the same time, I suppose we could put a sort of glass case on top of each box set with a Mrs. Norman Maine collector doll in one of a dozen different designer outfits enclosed.
The present public health emergency, which is turning our life like Pandemic 2: Electric Deltaloo, is still going strong, which is causing some issues. It’s making returning to the boards a little difficult, but I’ve scheduled an outside performance with the San Diego Symphony at the Balboa Park Bandshell. It’s a one-night-only tribute to American tap dance, including orchestral versions of well-known songs like Top Hat and Tea for Two. In the second act, I reprise my iconic stair tap piece You’re the Tap from Pipe Fitters Dream as the main attraction. As an encore, I’ll do Ann Miller’s famous Campbell’s Soup ad, but it’s meant to be a secret, so you didn’t hear it from me. My in-house productions for VickiTube, my streaming service, are still doing well, and I have an absolutely fantastic lineup for The View with Vicki next week, which includes Charro, Barbara Eden, and Magdalena Montezuma.
I haven’t had much stamina to go out in the evenings, and the social scene in Los Angeles has been rather quiet in recent months, so I’ve resorted to spending most of my nights curled up in front of the television with Netflix. What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, a 1993 film starring a young Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio, was my pick for a movie this evening. I had watched the movie in the cinema when it originally came out, but hadn’t seen it since, so I was excited to see it again almost a quarter-century later. The fact that it was in color was the first thing that caught my attention. It stayed in black and white in my memory, like previous films about small-town anomie like The Last Picture Show and Hud. It’s a fine movie, but it might have been much better if the filmmakers had believed that an audience would turn up for a black-and-white picture about the emptiness of middle America and the lives of its people.
What Are You Eating? The story of Gilbert Grape is set in the tiny Iowa hamlet of Endora. The Grape family, who live in a crumbling home on the outskirts of town constructed by their now-deceased father, is led by a mother (Darlene Cates) who is so unhappy that she has eaten herself to morbid obesity and is reliant on her young adult children to care for her. Gilbert (Depp), a cashier at the small mom and pop store that is being suffocated by the rivalry of a contemporary supermarket just off the interstate, struggles to keep the home and family together while also nurturing his mentally challenged younger brother Arnie (DiCaprio). His sister Amy (Laura Harrington) keeps the food flowing, while his younger sister Ellen (Mary Kate Schelhardt) struggles to deal with high school with a family she considers an embarrassment. Gilbert is enslaved by his duties and attempts to deal with an adolescent romance with the local insurance agent’s wife (Mary Steenburgen) (Kevin Tighe).
An yearly caravan of Airstream trailers arrives in this desolate life, bound for a local leisure spot. When one of the towing trucks breaks a gasket, stranding free-spirited Becky (Juliette Lewis) and her grandmother (Penelope Branning) until the right component can be obtained and their truck fixed, Gilbert takes Arnie to watch them pass by. The new girl, who understands Gilbert’s profound sadness and obligations, is noticed by the local guys, including Gilbert and his friends (John C. Reilly and Crispin Glover). As we follow these people through their quietly desperate lives – Arnie has a habit of causing problems by climbing the local water tower, there’s a milestone birthday party, and several significant deaths change everyone’s outlooks – we have hope that the people we’ve come to know and love will have a better tomorrow as we leave Endora.
What Are You Eating? Gilbert Grape is a character study of people as well as a culture. It’s as sharp as it is because the film was directed by an outsider, Swedish director Lasse Hallstrom (My Life as a Dog), who has a natural way of letting characters breathe and grow on screen in scenes that appear more improvised than scripted (though the script is there, and it’s very tight – by Peter Hedges based on his novel of the same name). The film has a somewhat magical reality to it because to Hallstrom’s use of vast open sky outdoor sequences accented with slightly odd images (the procession of Airstreams, a lobster tank, a fast food restaurant being transported intact on the back of a flatbed trailer). Sven Nykvist’s cinematography is really stunning.
What Are You Eating? Gilbert Grape is very much an actor’s film, and it has helped Depp and DiCaprio establish themselves as rising stars. For his honest portrayal as the disturbed Arnie, DiCaprio received an Oscar nomination, daring to embrace all of his tics and idiosyncrasies, keeping the viewer both somewhat horrified and falling in love with the adolescent. It’s a tough job to maintain that balance, but he does it well. Depp is only beginning to mature from the lovely adolescent he was in his early performances, such as A Nightmare on Elm Street. He’s given carte blanche to be contemplative and keep much of what makes Gilbert tick on the inside, with just a few bursts of emotion to add to the film’s strength. Excessive surface quirks ruin much of his later work, particularly with Tim Burton. Darlene Cates is also fantastic as the fat mother. She didn’t make another film after that. The supporting cast is excellent, and Juliette Lewis is at her most endearing.
I highly advise you to watch What’s Eating Gilbert Grape if you haven’t already. It gradually immerses you in the characters and their environment, and you will remember them long after you have left. It also reveals what made Johnny Depp and Leonardo DiCaprio so unique that they were able to attain fame.
Decapitation of a grasshopper. Treats made with ice cream Birthday cake that has been ruined. Sitting in the bath all night Crispin Glover for the sake of Crispin Glover. Aquaphobia. A fire broke out in the house. Sex at the kitchen table. Wading pool has a symbolic meaning.
See our introduction to Mrs. Norman Maine for additional information.
Mrs. Norman Maine sprang to life, full grown like Athena, from Andy’s head during a difficult period of life shortly after his relocation to Alabama. Originally from Seattle, Washington, land of mist, coffee, and flying salmon, Mrs. Norman Maine sprang to life, full grown like Athena, from Andy’s head during a difficult period of life shortly after his relocation to Alabama.
The movie is based on the 1991 novel of the same name, by Canadian author Anne Rice. It tells the story of troubled artist/model/actor/mystery writer Lestat de Lioncourt (Tom Cruise), who has lived for centuries in the bodies of many others. During the course of the film, Lestat reveals what he has done to each body, and the audience can piece together how he moves from one to the next.. Read more about what’s killing gilbert grape and let us know what you think.
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