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Saturday, May 25, 2024
'Eat Pray Love' woos audience

Eat Pray Love

'Eat Pray Love' woos audience

Go. Watch. Love. Viewers, especially female, will undergo that very process once they decide to see the cinematic masterpiece that is ""Eat Pray Love.""

Julia Roberts takes the role of Liz Gilbert, a broken and newly divorced writer. After an attempt at a rebound relationship turns sour, Liz devises a brilliant plan to travel the world——actually dropping everything in order to go away and find herself. While for many this kind of year-long escape is nothing but a self-indulgent fantasy, in ""Eat Pray Love"" Liz actually has this opportunity. Based on the memoir by Elizabeth Gilbert, the film is directed by Ryan Murphy, creator of the TV series ""Nip/Tuck"" and ""Glee."" And thanks to Murphy's great direction, the movie never loses track of the book's best attributes. Food is displayed with mouth-watering intensity, peripheral characters are bursting with vitality, the leading men are unnaturally gorgeous, foreign landscapes are shown in amazing lighting and angles, and self-discovery is the unwavering focus.

Spanning Italy, India and Bali, this self-discovery is slowly molded throughout Liz's experiences in each country she visits. The plot is very well organized, clearly aligning one country with food, the next with religion and the last with love. Along Roberts' search for peace, Murphy also provides flashbacks from Liz's past to illustrate her demons. With her honest giggle and sincerity, Roberts gives Liz a far more charismatic personality than she has in the book. She does a fantastic job capturing even minute emotions, though her admission to developing a muffin top in Italy is a little unbelievable. After all, this is still Julia Roberts.

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The film's supporting actors cast a romantic glow over the entire story line. David, played by James Franco, is the most bitter part of Liz's life, thus serving as a wake-up call and catalyst for Liz's departure. Once on her trip, Liz befriends Sofi and Giovanni, who they introduce her into their social circle. Supportive of her journey, the duo add excitement to her life as any great friends would. In India, Richard (Richard Jenkins) helps Liz forgive herself for her divorce. The actor gives tear-inducing insight about regret and the process of forgiveness. However, among the touching moments, there are also very funny moments. Felipe, played by Javier Bardem, provides comic relief, offsetting an untrusting Liz. This charisma makes it impossible not to root for him in his quest for romance with Liz. Fortunately for Felipe——and for us——the story ends in typical chick-flick fashion: romance and happiness.

""Eat Pray Love"" may be a romanticized version of the book, but it definitely captures the hearts of moviegoers. Just seeing the landscape and architecture of each country alone is enough reason to love the movie. While mostly aimed at a female audience, whoever leaves the theater will leave as a world traveler who believes in love.

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