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MOVIE REVIEW: Hemingway’s Garden of Eden

A period piece with no exclamation marks

Hemingway's Garden of Eden

Hemingway's Garden of Eden

  • Hemingway's Garden of Eden
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This period piece (which is a piece of...something I won’t write)…takes place in the early 1900s. It involves a rich couple on their honeymoon. The guy is a writer, and the woman is from a wealthy family. Just to give you an example of how rich – she surprises him with a Bugatti.

In a weird coincidence, I saw this movie the same day I read about Beyonce buying Jay-Z a Bugatti as a gift.

That’s not the only gift Mena Suvari (American Beauty, American Pie) brings her husband, played by Jack Huston -- grandson of legendary director John Huston. She brings home Caterina Murino – perhaps the prettiest woman you’ll see on screen this year.

She was a Bond girl in Casino Royale, andtook fourth place in the Miss Italy pageant (someone show me the first three).

With a love triangle that involves “willing” participants, things always end up complicated. The problem is – whatever Suvai’s character would’ve done in this movie would’ve been complicated. She’s a psycho that always seems to be testing her husband. And very early on, we quit caring about what happens. It doesn’t matter how attractive the cast is, or how nice the settings are.

Another problem this movie has is that it doesn’t feel authentic. Every few minutes, I felt like I was watching actors that were just reading lines, wearing clothing from the time period; or talking about drinks like Absinthe in a contrived way in order to put us in that environment.

It was a pleasant surprise to see Matthew Modine (a former Chula Vista resident), an actor who always brings a solid performance.

The elephant hunting scenes he’s in seem out of place and are surprisingly uninteresting. I guess they figured it gave the story more of a Hemingway feel (the story is from a posthumously publishedHemmingway novel). I think Papa is rolling in his grave at this travesty of filmmaking.

The dialogue didn’t seem very believable, and by the end of the almost two hour movie, you’re just glad to see the credits roll.

I did wonder what they did with the blue Bugatti.

I’m giving this film an F.