Monday, May 15, 2017

Mystic Pizza

Year 9, Day 135 - 5/15/17 - Movie #2,630

BEFORE: Julia Roberts carries over from "Mother's Day", and she'll be here tomorrow also, as I get out of this misplaced (?) romance chain and back to other matters.

THE PLOT: Three teenage girls come of age while working at a pizza parlor in the town of Mystic, Connecticut.

AFTER: For the record, I've been to Mystic, CT a couple of times, and last year we finally bit the bullet and visited the Mystic Pizza restaurant.  I don't know why we avoided it on the first trip, probably because it seemed like such a tourist-y thing to do.  We spent time at the bookstore down the street, and the pizza shop was up this little hill, so climbing up there seemed like a bit of work, maybe that was it.  Also for the record, the real pizza restaurant is NOT seen in the film, the filmmakers converted a house in nearby Stonington to serve as the restaurant set, but since then, the owners of the pizza shop renovated their restaurant to look more like the film set.  Plus, they changed the sign to look more like the logo seen on the poster and they sell t-shirts there with the "A Slice of Heaven slogan" - so life, at some point, does imitate art.

One might imply from the name that the pizza has some kind of magic power - no, it can't read your mind or tell your future, what a disappointment.  As for the "magical" taste that is espoused by the restaurant critic in this film - well, it's good pizza, for sure.  I remember I had a slice with spaghetti and meatballs on it.  Nice callback, by the way, to the film "Burnt" whose plot last week also hinged on getting a stellar review from a food critic, though I doubt Mystic Pizza would earn three Michelin stars.

Another repeated theme - this is the fourth film in a ROW to feature someone who is unsure about getting married or who turns down a marriage proposal.  John Krasinski's character in "The Hollars" was unsure about marriage and fatherhood, and Sandra Bullock's character in "28 Days" turned down her boyfriend's proposal (she was in rehab at the time, to be fair) and then last night the barmaid in "Mother's Day" wouldn't marry her boyfriend until she made contact with her mother.  Just an odd coincidence, I'm sure.

Finally, we've got two sisters with relationship problems, which also carries over from "Mother's Day".  Here we've got one woman who falls for an upper-class law student, and the other gets involved with the married man who hired her to baby-sit his daughter.  They bond over the fact that he went to Yale, and she's going to study astronomy there soon.

I don't know, there just doesn't seem to be too much to this one, not enough to really hold my interest, anyway.  I know I complained about too many characters and too many nonsensical subplots in "Mother's Day", but this one seems to have gone too far in the other direction, it's sort of minimalist by comparison.  I guess I'm looking for that happy medium.

Also starring Annabeth Gish (last seen in "Wyatt Earp"), Lili Taylor (last seen in "She's Having a Baby"), Vincent D'Onofrio (last seen in "Run All Night"), William R. Moses, Conchata Ferrell (last seen in "For Keeps?"), Adam Storke, Joanna Merlin (last seen in "The Invasion"), John Fiore (last seen in "In Dreams"), Gene Amoroso, Sheila Ferrini, Porscha Radcliffe, Louis Turenne, Janet Zarish, John Cunningham, Ann Flood, Suzanne Shepherd, Jack Ringstad, Bucky Walsh, with a cameo from Matt Damon (last seen in "The Martian").

RATING: 4 out of 10 lobsters in the fridge

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