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Thread: The Pursuit of Happyness

  1. #11
    HBK fan nilesgirl's Avatar
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    I am really interested in seeing this. I love Will Smith and I think this is going to be a huge win for him! I've been watching the Fresh Prince marathon lately and I can't believe how much he's grown since then. And every time I watch it I still crack up laughing. But that's the mark of a great actor. Someone who can take any role and make it their own. I think that no matter what kind of role they give him, he can pull it off. Serious, funny, I think he could even play a villian in a thriller (or horror movie..whatever)
    Hurley: (holding up a Jesus statue) I don't know. I thought there might be a prowler or something.
    Mrs. Reyes: (grabbing the statue) Jesus Christ is not a weapon! - LOST "There's No Place Like Home Pt. 1

  2. #12
    On a cupcake mission! Lois Lane's Avatar
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    ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY review of the film

    Will Smith said in an interview that Chris Gardner (the man this story is based on) didn't want him for the role originally. He had Denzel Washington in mind.


    http://www.cnn.com/2006/SHOWBIZ/Movi...ef=rss_showbiz
    By Owen Gleiberman
    Entertainment Weekly
    EW Grade: B+

    (Entertainment Weekly) -- Will Smith doesn't seem the likeliest candidate to play a desperate, struggling man. Whatever the role (love coach, alien fighter, Ali), he projects speed and good times, an almost aerobic self-confidence.

    But in "The Pursuit of Happyness," which is set in San Francisco in 1981, at the dawn of the age of go-go capitalism, Smith doesn't just wear a few flecks of gray in his hair. He slows himself down, playing a man who awakens to the reality that life is nickel-and-diming him to death. It's a beautiful and understated performance, one that hums with a richer, quieter music than Smith has mustered before.

    What hooks you in this shrewdly touching movie, based on a true story, is how specific it is about one man's economic perils. Smith's Chris Gardner is an earnest fellow in his late 30s who sells medical equipment -- or, rather, one particular item, a high-density bone scanner that he hawks, with middling success, on a freelance basis. His mistake was to invest his savings in these contraptions, and now he's stuck, toting them around town like oversize typewriters. (Watch the movie's trailer Video)

    His marriage has fallen apart, and when the prickly, impatient Linda (Thandie Newton) takes off, leaving Chris and his young son (played by Smith's son Jaden with a sly-eyed lack of fuss that matches nicely with his father's), he applies for the internship program at Dean Witter, where he'll compete to be a stockbroker. Smith makes Chris a go-getter with a hint of sadness -- a bit of a fuddy-duddy, but a smart, dogged one. (He gets his foot in the door by solving a Rubik's Cube.)

    In "The Pursuit of Happyness," we don't just know Chris' dreams. We know his bank account, his tally of parking tickets, his back taxes. The fact that he's African-American is there at the margins -- he would surely have gone to college had he come from a less hardscrabble background -- but the real issue is the subtler one of class mobility in America. Since the internship is unsalaried, Chris is forced to survive by other measures, and what this means is that the job is really geared to people who've already attained middle-class solidity. Chris has to pretend to be something he's not, and the power of Smith's acting is in the gentle, mounting fury with which he absorbs a hundred misperceptions and slights.

    As compelling as the film is, it does have a rather single-minded, one-ordeal-after-another, Murphy's Law quality. Yet the director, Italy's Gabriele Muccino, lends a humane touch even to the running joke of Chris getting his bone scanners stolen, and the plot is an inexorable chain of money logic: Chris' escape from a cabbie he can't afford to pay, his looming tax crisis, his move to a hotel and, finally, a homeless shelter. The lower he falls, the more Smith endows him with a ragged nobility and will.

    "The Pursuit of Happyness" speaks eloquently to the anxieties of our own time, when staying afloat, let alone movin' on up, has rarely been tougher.

  3. #13
    Scrappy Spartan Broadway's Avatar
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    It's a beautiful and understated performance, one that hums with a richer, quieter music than Smith has mustered before.
    There couldn't possibly be a better description than the above. This movie was quite possibly the most depressing movie that I've seen in quite some time, but from the very beginning Will Smith grabs your heart (there is no tug here) and takes it along for the ride. His performance was absolutely wonderful and there is no doubt in my mind why he was nominated for a Golden Globe (and will be for an Oscar, I am sure), which is a rarity for me these days.

    As compelling as the film is, it does have a rather single-minded, one-ordeal-after-another, Murphy's Law quality.
    It's one of those movies where you sit there thinking "what more could happen to this man" and then want to cry when you remind yourself that this is a true story.

    fluff, I would highly, highly recommend this movie.
    Never let the things you want make you forget about the things you have.

  4. #14
    Premium Member dagwood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amanda;2178260;
    Does the spelling of "happyness" drive anyone else crazy, or is that just me?
    Drives me nuts, too. Although, it is a rather short drive.
    He who laughs last thinks slowest

    #oldmanbeatdown - Donny BB16

  5. #15
    RENThead JLuvs's Avatar
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    Saw this today. Simply put: Brilliant movie and the best movie I have seen this year.
    Whenever you see darkness, there is extraordinary opportunity for the light to burn brighter.
    -Bono

  6. #16
    FORT Fogey Johnsonator's Avatar
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    I'm really wanting to see this movie, is it really sad?

  7. #17
    RENThead JLuvs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnsonator;2186856;
    I'm really wanting to see this movie, is it really sad?
    Yes. There were so many moments that I wanted to cry and I did cry at certain parts, but the message of the movie is just so powerful. Something that I really needed to be reminded of.
    Whenever you see darkness, there is extraordinary opportunity for the light to burn brighter.
    -Bono

  8. #18
    FORT Fogey Johnsonator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JLuvs;2186859;
    Yes. There were so many moments that I wanted to cry and I did cry at certain parts, but the message of the movie is just so powerful. Something that I really needed to be reminded of.
    I can't wait to watch it, Will Smith is an awesome actor.

  9. #19
    Best Buddies Gutmutter's Avatar
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    I took my daughter and 2 16 year old friends. My daughter and I liked it - her friends did not. It may have helped that I had watched the Oprah show with Will, Jaden, and the actual Chris Gardner and his son, so I knew the ending. It is a heavy film, so don't go expecting a good time. Worth watching, though.
    Count your blessings!

  10. #20
    Scrappy Spartan Broadway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JLuvs;2186859;
    Yes. There were so many moments that I wanted to cry and I did cry at certain parts, but the message of the movie is just so powerful. Something that I really needed to be reminded of.
    I am so excited that others have finally seen this movie!!!

    JLuvs, it's a very safe bet that
    Click to see Spoiler:
    you cried in the scene in the subway where Chris locks himself in the bathroom with his son. I nearly lost it even at the beginning of that scene with the touching way that he and his son interacted while still sitting out on the bench. I don't know that any two actors could have connected like they did since they were truly father and son... but it was just special. I, of course, completely lost it once Chris started crying.


    Johnsonator... the movie is, indeed, incredibly sad. And, like Gutmutter, I mentioned earlier that this is quite possibly the most depressing movie that I have seen in a very long time... but it was well worth it. The hope that Chris Gardner clung to in the face of extreme adversity was amazing. I know that the events have been embellished, but if even half of the details are truthful (which I know that they are) the story is incredible.

    And I agree with you, JLuvs... easily the best overall movie that I've seen all year, and Will Smith gave the most outstanding performance.
    Never let the things you want make you forget about the things you have.

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