The Brunching Shuttlecocks Features

I saw a really swell movie.

It's called Pleasantville, and everyone should go see it, or they'll never truly understand life.

Here's the story: Two teenagers from the 90's get sucked into a black and white TV sit-com from the 50's called Pleasantville. They cause some odd changes to happen. Basketball players miss shots, kids start having sex, and all the black and white people turn color.

It's a simple premise, but it is not, by any means, a simple movie. It is a brilliant look at art and life and 50's values vs. 90's values, and racism, and all kids of good stuff.

Kids, this movie is really good. First of all, it's technically pretty darned cool, because everyone starts out in black and white, and then one by one they become colorized. Watching the film, you begin to understand how the classic black and white characters must have felt when Ted Turner got his hands on them.

But even without the technical brilliance, this movie shines on so many levels. In fact, it shined on levels that I don't even understand, because I can be a little slow sometimes. I also liked that they had a woman masturbate and it was an important and pivotal moment in the story. Awesome!

Oh sure, a lot of you pundits can stand to one side and criticize the logic of the plot. For example, just how does this magic remote control work? When Don Knotts (more on him in a moment) sends the kids to Pleasantville, why is he doing that? What does he want to happen? Why does sex turn most of the kids color? (Actually, I think I might know the answer to that one.)

But I say lighten up. Who cares? This is a fairy tale. A fantasy. Reality has been skewed so that we can take a look at a lot of really interesting, cool and moving stuff. And let's not forget that Reese Witherspoon is a babe!

The acting is great. Aside from Miss Witherspoon (who really needs to get a better last name), Jeff Daniels, William H. Macy, Joan Allen, J.T. Walsh, Tobey Maguire and Don Knotts are all great.

Yes. Don Knotts is awesome. He was easily the perfect actor for the role, kinda like the spirit of 50's TV. Which, in a way, he really is.

So go see the movie. You know you want to. Go ahead, treat yourself. I mean after all, this is the Self-Made Critic telling you to go see a movie that has no car crashes, no spaceships and no semi-naked women. So it must be a really good movie.

It is. I give Pleasantville 4 1/4 Babylons. I was going to only give it 4, but I changed my mind. Why? Because I'm the critic, that's why. Deal with it. This is just a really keen movie.

Editor's note:

What's really annoying is that The Highly-Impressionable Critic has taken to using the words "Keen," "Swell," and "Gee-Whiz" in every other sentence. Makes me want to do some very non-Pleasant things.

Rated: PG-13
Directed By: Gary Ross
Starring: Jeff Daniels, William H. Macy, Joan Allen, Tobey Maguire, Reese Witherspoon, Don Knotts, J.T. Walsh and Technicolor.

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