Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Weekly Rec: Juliet, Naked

I read Nick Hornby's novel Juliet, Naked back when it came out and loved it a lot, so I was both excited and worried about the new movie adaptation. Since I haven't read the book in a while, I didn't remember all the details, but rather just the feeling of it, and as I think I've said before I find that's often the best way to go into an adaptation: with affection for the original but without it being so fresh that I can't see the adaptation on its own terms.

And this definitely worked out for me this time, because seen this way the Juliet, Naked movie was virtually perfect. The cast, led by Rose Byrne, Ethan Hawke, and Chris O'Dowd, is incredible, and the script and adaptation choices really work. It's about a British woman whose longtime boyfriend is obsessed with a nineties American alt-rock musician who has vanished from the limelight. She and the musician sort of accidentally start an email correspondence just when their lives are each going through a lot of upheaval, and it plays out sort of as you'd expect but also not. It's a romance and it's funny but it's not exactly a romcom; the movie is warm but complicated, with no easy happy endings for anyone. I loved every moment of it.

Juliet, Naked is currently in theaters, though you may have to do a little digging to find it.

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