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January 4th, 2010 at 2:23:09 PM permalink
This movie was based on a long running Broadway musical ("Nine") which is losely based on the Oscar winning 1963 Fellini film 8 1/2. The title of the file 8 1/2 owes to the fact that Fellini made 6 feature films and 3 shorts before this feature film. The movie "Nine" is about the main character's (director Guido Contini's) ninth movie (I think...).

In the movie "Nine," the main character Contini previously had directed six good movies, followed by two flops. The storyline follows Contini's effort to make his ninth movie. Unfortunately, he can't do it -- he just can't think of another profoud idea; he is constantantly reminded how lousy his previous two movies had been. At one point he thinks, "Everyone says you make your best movies before you are famous." So, he is depressed and scriptless as he goes to a press conference to discuss his new movie. Realizing he has nothing, he disappears.

Contini travels to a distant spa-hotel where he is accompanied by his numero-uno mistress (Penelope Cruz). Because of his fame, Contini is quickly discovered, so the disappearance doesn't last long. What follows are the seven female characters in the movie, in sequence, singing songs to Contini. These songs are interspersed with a rough plot about his failing relationships with each of these women, his infidelity, and his own midlife crisis. Along these women are his mother (Sophia Loren), his wife, his mistress, his constume designer, and a reporter. We also meet Contini as a nine-year old boy, his "inner-child." Ultimately, Contini's life falls apart. The question of the movie is if the movie will ever be made. In other words, "the movie is the movie." Yet another recursive movie.

During the movie a large fraction of the audience left. It was also panned in the local newspaper and on the ABC show "At the Movies" who said something like "never have so many great actors created such a poor movie." On the other hand, it got 5 Golden Globe nominations. Someone has to be wrong.

I think the Golden Globes got it right. It was nominated for best movie, best actor, best actress, best supporting actress, best song. This movie was fantastic. Each character had real depth, and there were a lot of them to keep track of. The excruciating decline of Contini was punctuated with remarkable vocal performances by the female characters, together with outstanding acting -- only Kate Hudson was weak in her acting performance (she seemed very uncomfortable in the skanky outfit).

If you don't like Fellini movies, or broadway, this movie could be a challenge. I think those who left during the show fell into this lot. Many of those who stayed to the end applauded.

"Nine" is not easy to get or enjoy unless you like dark artsy movies. There is no violence and only mild sexual content. It's really all about the song, dance, and disintigration of a personality. If you've ever been to a psychiatrist (or needed to go), you'll love this movie.

"Who would have thought a good little girl like you could destroy my beautiful wickedness!"
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January 5th, 2010 at 6:30:49 AM permalink
Quote: DorothyGale

If you don't like Fellini movies...

that would be me.

btw there are two *other* fairly new movies called "9" vis a vis "nine"

and even others actually, a phenomenon which I find quite odd indeed

this movie:
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
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