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February 27, 2004

Lost in Translation is out on DVD. I saw it when it was in the theaters with my wife and two daughters. I and my older daughter liked it a lot. My wife didn't like it and my younger daughter judged it "maybe the most boring movie I have ever seen."

My explanation for the widely different evaluations is this: the movie is about a middle-aged man (Bill Murray) who meets a 20-something woman (Scarlett Johannson) in Tokyo; I'm the only member of my family who is a middle-aged man and my older daughter is closest in age to the 20-something woman.

Bill Murray was great; I hope he wins the Oscar.


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Jon Henke

I'm with the "it was boring" section. My wife and I saw it awhile back and couldn't believe how little that movie had to say.....though it certainly did go on while not saying it.

Perhaps it was expectations. I thought...Bill Murray? In Japan? Hilarity must ensue!

Sadly, Murray had all of his humor surgically removed prior to the movie, so....


Well, it wasn't supposed to be funny, though the movie does have its lighter moments. Give Bill Murray a break, he did a marvelous job and I hope he wins the Oscar as well.
I loved the movie for its avoidance of the common Hollywood blather. The movie does not lead the viewer by the nose, rather it frames situations that are perhaps more common among people than we care to admit. I think the movie is very subtle - there are a lot of very interesting images and symbols. Japan is used as a perfect backdrop to represent the alienation that Murray and Johannson characters are wrestling with. There's a non-traditional ending where the guy does not get the girl. How refreshing. The filmmaker took a lot of risks with this story. It's true that this quiet, thoughtful, and introspective film will not appeal to people who expect explosions, car chase scenes, and the normal adrenaline-inducing crap that comes out of Hollywood.

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