The Lake House — Not a Horror Movie

In the past I’ve reviewed books on this site but I don’t remember doing a full-on movie review. Since I’ve shared my English majorness with you, I think it’s time I whipped out my Film majorly skeelz.

Over-run with boxes, expecting company tomorrow to come help us get some serious work done, I decided the best course of action was to ditch my responsibilities and head out for a latenight movie with Karlita.

We decided on The Lake House, although every time we hear the title we both think it’s a horror movie masquerading as a Nicholas-Sparks-style chick flick. There was no horror. A bad cream turtleneck sweater on the ever-so well-postured Mr. Reeves, but no real horror to speak of.

We had our concerns about Keanu but he was not nearly as wooden as Al Gore in this role and even managed to relax his neck for two or three scenes. More disturbing to me was how Christopher Plummer begins to look more and more like Old Mrs. Harris from the Anne of Green Gables movies as he ages. And he seems to die a lot. In fact, he’s died so much in movies that I was surprised to see him in this one and playing a jerk too, not something I like to see done by Captain von Trapp.

piratey thingsThere were a ton of people pretending to be a pirate (at the theatre, not on The Lake House — Arrrr). I know that sounds strange and it was. Several people were pretending to be one pirate. One guy was the eye patch, another one the pock-marked nose, while 5 other guys dressed up as the remaining toes. Okay, it’s late. But there were many many pirates at the theatre. For fear of having my deck swabbed or something, I restrained myself from taking pictures of them but I guess they were all lined up to see Jerry Bruckheimer’s latest triumph.

Can you think of any other producer who gets top billing above the director? Me neither. He smells of money so people show up. And he’s got The Depp, Legolas, and that really popular British girl with the long skinny neck who looks like Natalie Portman.

Anyway, we were not seeing Pirates of the Caribbean: Revenge of the Guy With Worms for a Beard at 12:01am so we did not have to stand in a line stretching to the Karate Dojo, nor were we required to superglue a parrot to our shoulder.

We were required to buy matching “gourmet” pretzels with “cheese” sauce.


So, the movie is about Keanu Reeves dressing in Shabby Scruffy Lumberjack Chic style (which I find highly attractive until the turtlenecks begin to surface for the anti-climactic climax) and Sandra Bullock trying to convince us that she’s a very sad and haunted young doctor, the kind who went to medical school.

That’s basically the plot in a nutshell. The long version includes a time portal mailbox where they send letters back and forth across a 2 year time gap, sort of like that Hallmark Hall of Fame movie, The Love Letter, only in miniature. It ends with her doing something that would have stopped the whole movie from happening in the first place, except instead it brings Keanu Reeves back to her so they can kiss peckishly and walk off arm-in-turtle-necked-arm.

The final kisses are just not very satisfying. Never Been Kissed — great kissing. However that movie had the word “kiss” in the title. This movie was not called “Kiss at the Lake House” or even “Lovin’ at the Lake House.” I should be lucky there was any romance at all, since the word romance was also conspicuously absent from the title. I have to give credit where credit is due. The move most certainly did contain a Lake House.

It also contained great lines, just lame enough for Keanu to deliver perfectly, like “She’s more real to me than any of that stuff.” The stuff, yes, the stuff. If she’s more real than the stuff, you’ve definitely got a keeper on your hands, Ted. You should probably plant a stolen tree outside her luxury apartment complex in downtown Chicago. No one will ever notice it’s there… except the girl… and then she’ll be in love with you, ba-da-bing!

Now the writing in this movie wasn’t nearly as bad as Star Wars Episode II, which coincidentally starred that girl who looks like Natalie Portman, or was it HER look-alike? Anywho, the worst romantic line of all time occurred there, something akin to, “I hate sand. Sand is rough and coarse. But you are not rough and coarse. You (stroking her skin) are soft and smooth.” At least that’s the way Dan says it to me when we’re re-enacting and doing scene-work.

Speaking of posers, there was one good passionate moment in the movie. Never mind that it made no sense for Sandra Bullock to be making out with Keanu Reeves, whom she’d never met before, at her birthday party, being held at her boyfriend’s house, which she later denied, saying that only Junior High kids “make out.” Um, sorry, NU-UH. I make out all the time and Junior High? I was too busy collecting key chains and playing in the band to make out with anyone. Duh! Wasn’t everybody? I mean besides sad-for-no-real-reason-haunted-by-their-unexplained-tragic-past doctor-types.

Anyway, the passion, the slow dancing, the nuzzling = good, the kind of scene we look for in an escapist mom’s-night-out kind of movie. They were dancing to a song that Karli and I decided we liked. I said I liked it except for the fact that the guy singing it sounded like he was trying to sound like that one not-dead Beatle. You mean, Paul McCartney? Yes, him, not the train conductor drummer guy.

So it turns out the song is by Paul McCartney who is apparently so pathetic that he can’t even do a good impersonation of himself. But we like it and will probably buy the CD to recapture the moment, not the nose-nuzzling moment, but the moment in the theatre when we discovered who was singing and almost laughed ourselves into a seizure.

It may not be his fault. He could have recorded it 2 years from now… in the future. Everything sounds different in the future. He could be doing an impression of the 2006 version of himself. Karli figures if they have the time travel technology available to use in the movie, why not use it in the recording studio too, see if any of the audience members are ept enough to pick up on it.

I would definitely lift my left pinky toe for this movie. Thumbs? Not so much.

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