I hope everyone had a great thanksgiving and it is slowly crawling their way out of their turkey coma.
My thanksgiving encompassed seeing the movie Australia with the lovely Hope Tarr. This epic movie stars Hugh Jackman (sigh!), the sexiest man alive 2008, and Nicole Kidman. The description of the movie from Yahoo!:
"In Australia, on the brink of World War II, an English aristocrat travels to the faraway continent, where she meets a rough-hewn local and reluctantly agrees to join forces with him to save the land she inherited. Together, they embark upon a transforming journey across hundreds of miles of the world's most beautiful yet unforgiving terrain, only to still face the bombing of the city of Darwin by the Japanese forces that attacked Pearl Harbor. "
Sounds exciting doesn't it? And it was, up to a point. I'm not a huge Nicole Kidman fan, and she was working my last nerve in the beginning of the movie. I felt that she was overplaying just a little bit the whole "grand lady of the manor." But Hugh Jackman? Mamma Mia, is he hot in this movie or what? Just thinking about the scene where he's soaping up and washing himself off in the outback is enough to make me sweat. I have to admit that there was a good chemistry between the two of them, and I found the love story believable. Of course, Nicole Kidman's character, Lady Ashley has to spoil it by giving Hugh Jackman's character The Drover, a stupid ultimatum.
The movie is a strange hybrid of epic love story, war picture, and drama about what happened to the aborigines during this time period. At times, it didn't quite jibe. The young boy who plays Nullah, the half-caste child, is absolutely adorable and the movie is narrated by him. You really feel for what he's going through, and how hard it must have been to feel like you have no place in your own country. Watching the movie and seeing how all the aboriginal children who were what they derisively called "creamy" being removed from their families to as one gentleman put "to breed the black out of them" was heartbreaking. And the end note about how the Australian government only just apologized this year for a policy they pursued up until 1973, well it just doesn't cut it. By the way, as the American government ever apologized to the American Indians for stealing their land or for slavery? Just a thought.
Hugh Jackman is so wonderful in this film that I feel that producers should be whipping up romantic comedies for him. In fact I have a plot for one. It would star Hugh Jackman and basically any actress who is not Renee Zwellweger, Nicole Kidman, or Hilary Swank. Ideally it would star Julia Roberts or Sandra Bullock. Better yet, make her Tina Fey! Hugh would play an Australian newspaper tycoon like Rupert Murdoch but younger and sexier. Tina Fey would play the owner of a newspaper like the Wall Street Journal that has been in her family for generations. Her crazy relatives who also co-own the newspaper are a motley crew of hippies, greedy yuppies, and other assorted eccentrics. They are eager to sell the paper to Hugh, but Tina still has a significant number of shares that he needs to truly own the paper. So he decides to woo her into selling to him.
Meanwhile she has a fiancee, the Bellamy of the picture (The Bellamy is named after actor Ralph Bellamy who played this character in an assortment of 1930's rom-com's like His Girl Friday and the Awful Truth. He's the good guy, but just a little dull. He's the editor of the paper. Hugh has a secret weapon to neutralize him though, Lucy Liu as his sexy but vicious forensic accountant, who is also his girlfriend. I see the Bellamy as played by Peter Hermann or Patrick Dempsey. Tina, of course, doesn't automatically succumb to Hugh's charms, particularly since he owns tabloids like the Sun where there's a topless girl on Page 3. She's worried that he's going to do that to her respectable paper.
There has to be moment where Hugh shows his vulnerable side to make Tina soften towards him. Perhaps she accompanies him to his remote outback ranch in Australia and sees another side of him. Perhaps he has a mother who treats him like less than his older brother who died in an unfortunate kangaroo accident.
See where I'm going with this? More romantic comedies with Hugh Jackman where he takes shirt off in every other scene, and perhaps gets to sing a tune or two.