Friday, July 31, 2009

Mostly Martha & No Reservations

No Reservations is a near frame by frame Hollywood adaptation of the German film, Mostly Martha. NR stars Catherine Zeta-Jones, Abigail Breslin, and Aaron Eckhart. MM stars Martina Gedeck (The Lives of Others), Maxime Foesrste, and Sergio Castellitto (Don't Move--a film which I watched in my film class that I still have to review).

I first watched NR in theatre and thought was a good romantic comedy. It had its funny parts like when Abigail throws away the black truffles that she thought was trash and the scene where Catherine sticks the raw steak onto the table of the patron who kept complaining. These two scenes, which are my favorites of the film, are not as well done in the German version. The truffle scene is just a part of a montage that shows the days when Maxime was at work with Martina. And the raw steak scene is not as dramatic or as funny.

The chemistry between the actors of both films had their own problems of various degrees. Catherine, Abigail, and Aaron together are okay. There is some love chemistry between Catherine and Aaron but it did not really work out in the beginning. It did get a bit better towards the end during the dinner at Catherine's house and when Aaron helps search for Abigail. Unfortunately, in MM, the chemistry never ever worked in addition to Maxime appearing to be an unlovable child.

I will, however, say that I thought the individual performances of Martina and Sergio are great and better than those from Catherine and Aaron. They made the film more of a dramedy than a romantic comedy. I thought Martina was better at showing the struggle and the pain she faced as she lost her sister and as she became an accidental guardian. Catherine, on the other hand, was beautiful in the film and did a good job becoming a friend to Abigail. As always, Abigail is cute and lovable.

Finally, a little note on the food of the film...they both made me hungry but skip MM and watch NR.

No comments: