Monday, April 26, 2010

Memorial Monday: Lost in Translation

For all new posts regarding older movies will now fall under Memorial Monday's. To start off is Lost in Translation. Enjoy!

Summary: Bob (Bill Murray) is an over the hill actor who goes to Tokyo to do some work for his fading career. Although Bob has a family he feels lost in his life and is suffering from a mid life crisis. At his hotel he meets Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson) a newly married woman who spends her days doing nothing while her husband works on photo shoots. The odd couple quickly engages in a friendly relationship and come to find that they have more in common with each other than they do with their significant others. More importantly, they realize they are at the same point in their lives despite their difference in age.

Plot (A): The plot is fairly simplistic and straight forward but it’s the undertone feelings of both characters which really drive the film. Both Bob and Charlotte are lost in their lives and feel that it is escaping them day by day. Rarely are their feelings and thoughts of their own lives clearly stated. They are simply implied by their personalities, lack of energy, and sense of apathy. This movie has always stuck with me for several reasons but I’ll only mention its association to my life at the time. While studying abroad in Rome in 2004, my wife (then my girlfriend) were on spring break in Dublin and decided to see it. I connected with this film immediately because I too was in a different country where I sometimes felt unaccustomed to everyday life. I was a stranger living in a strange land where life was seemingly passing me by. The only difference between me and the characters was that I wasn’t truly alone. I had the loving company of a woman I’m now proud to call my wife.

Action: N/A

Acting & Dialogue (A): What you come to find out about these characters stems from their dialogue with each other and the people surrounding them. In some cases its very moving while at other times its funny. Perhaps the most important lines between Bob and Charlotte are at the end but they are not audible. Bob elegantly whispers into Charlotte’s ear forcing viewers to use their imagination. Typically, as everyone knows, Bill Murray is a comedic actor who brings comedies to another plain of existence. One of the funniest people to grace the silver screen Murray stepped out of his shell and provided an amazing performance worthy of an Oscar. Scarlet Johansson exhibits the same talent in her role. Her character finds comfort and a jolt of life when she’s with Bob. Despite her young age, her level of maturity is higher than her husband’s and peers. One reason such as this is why these characters find comfort in each other.

Sex Appeal (5): Seeing Scarlet Johansson in her panties was delightful treat! Other than that there’s nothing.

Director (A): Sofia Coppola’s second feature length film was an amazing success. Nominated for Best Original Screenplay, Best Picture, and Best Director Coppola left an everlasting impression on the film community that would even make her father Francis proud. Although she didn’t win for Best Picture or Director she did win for Best Original Screenplay, rightfully so. Her story was beautifully written and depicted. It was extremely smart of her to cast the setting of the story in a city that is so different from anything Americans are used to. The language, culture, religion, shit even the driving is nothing like these characters are used to. Coppola created a story where strangers met and formed a unique bond that impacted each other’s life forever.

Overall: A


  1. Scarlett Jo was stunning in this (as she always is!) And this was my favorite Bill Murray role since "What About Bob" Great review!

  2. ok i cannot stand her! i just think she is such a weirdo in all her roles and is like hat in all interviews. she seems like a spaced out ditz. BUT ive liked almost all the movies shes in so i guess that says something