Day 333: Hearts In Atlantis (2001)

heartsThe film I chose for today wasn’t even a film that I was planning on viewing for today. You see the thing is how can I say no first of all to a film that was based on a Stephen King novel and how could I say no second of all to a film that stars Anton Yelchin (Green Room). The film Hearts In Atlantis follows middle aged Bobby Garfield (David Morse) who attends a friends funeral and starts to recollect his past and one particular year when he was 11 years old (played by Yelchin). Bobby lives with his single mother Liz (Hope Davis) who is hopeless and clueless to what really matters in her life. That all begins to change one day when a mysterious man named Ted (Anthony Hopkins) shows up on their door step as he begins to change their lives to show them what really matters in life. The only problem is that Ted is in trouble and he entrusts Bobby for help against the Low Men. The film also stars Mika Boorem (Blue Crush) as Carol Gerber, Alan Tudyk (Zootopia) as Monte Man, Adam LeFevre (Hitch) as Don Biderman, Will Rothhaar (Kingpin) as John Sullivan, Timothy Reifsnyder (Wide Awake) as Harry Doolin, Celia Watson (Observe And Report) as Alana Files, and the film was directed by Scott Hicks (The Lucky One).

heartsinatlantisfilmThe funny thing about this films is who knew that six years later that Hope Davis and Anton Yelchin would play mother and son again in Charlie Bartlett? She’s not a completely hopeless mother in this film because she’s functional, but she is clueless just like she is in the other film. This film features a young Anton Yelchin and he was just as brilliant then as he was right before he passed away. He was masterful as that young child that is full of hope towards the future that the brilliant Anthony Hopkins character can see it. That is why he gives Bobby the gift of being able to see a bright future. While there is plenty of drama in the film, the mystery part is the most interesting part of the film in my opinion. You see Hopkin’s character is on the run from something and we begin to find out what and who as he let’s Bobby in on it slowly. The premise of it is different and interesting and you wonder if the Government really did try enlisting psychics to find communist spies? I loved the story of the film and I love how the film was set in the 1950’s with the outfits, cars, etc. The 50’s is one of my favorite decades besides the 1980’s because it looked like a simpler time so you know I loved the sets and props in the film. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade because I truly enjoyed it.

Day 23: Charlie Bartlett (2007)

Charlie-bartlettFor today’s film, I decided to review a film that starred Robert Downey Jr. who made a resurgence in his career in the 2000’s and Anton Yelchin who starred in a film I loved called Alpha Dog. The film I chose for today is called Charlie Bartlett and Yelchin plays the title character. Charlie is a kid who is just looking to fit in, but unfortunately he doesn’t know how to do it the right way as he has found himself getting kicked out of numerous schools. His clueless mother (Hope Davis) decides to enroll Charlie into Western Summit High, where Charlie will become the school’s psychiatrist in order to gain popularity. The only problem is that there are consequences for every action and Charlie has to try and use his new found popularity to do the right things. The film also stars Kat Dennings (Thor: Dark World) as Susan, Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man) as Principal Gardner, Tyler Hilton (Walk The Line) as Murphy, Mark Rendall (30 Days Of Night) as Kip, Dylan Taylor (Tideland) as Len Arbuckle, Megan Park (The Secret Life Of The American Teenager) as Whitney, Jake Epstein (Degrassi: The Next Generation) as Dustin, Derek McGrath (Carrie) as Superintendent Sedgwick, Jonathan Malen (Mean Girls) as Jordan, and the film was directed by Jon Poll (Captain America 1990).

charlie-bartlett-2You can look at this film in several different ways, is it social commentary on how obsessive our society has been on abusing prescription pain killers? Or is it commentary on how kids will do anything to become popular? Well, if it’s the second one, then that is something that has been happening for ages and even in film. Every generation has their films on what it’s like to be a teenager like what Fast Times At Ridgemont High did for the 80’s. I highly doubt that it was the first one just because the pills are a minor part of the whole film and only serve as a catalyst to get the film going. Although, there is this one line in the film that I thought was superb and exactly how society should look at teens and prescription drugs. It reads like, “Bringing psychiatric drugs and teenagers together is like opening a lemonade stand in the desert.” I thought that was a brilliant piece of writing from the writers. Everything about this film was good from the writing to the director and it’s sort of a coming of age story, but only in the fact that Charlie comes to realize who he really is and what his place is in society. Kat Dennings of course looks fantastic in the film and she does an amazing job playing a teenager with so much angst. Listen check out the film for yourself, it’s playing on one of the premium channels. I am going to give the film an B+ for a final grade.