Netflix A-Z: Sabrina (1995)

Next up is my S selection.  A little bit of a hesitation as I walk into the last few letters.  Mainly because I’m not sure what I’m in the mood for.  Have you seen the original Sabrina with Audrey Hepburn? I reviewed it HERE. I love Audrey Hepburn.  She is absolutely fantastic and inspiring.  That movie was the first movie of Humphrey Bogart that I ever saw.  So yeah, it was quite the memory.  Some of you commented that this 1995 remake was better.  I don’t know if I can agree but I’m giving it a shot now 😉

Let’s give it a go!

Sabrina (1995)

sabrina 1995

Director: Sydney Pollack

Cast: Harrison Ford, Greg Kinnear, Julia Ormond, Nancy Marchand, John Wood, Lauren Holly

An ugly duckling having undergone a remarkable change, still harbors feelings for her crush: a carefree playboy, but not before his business-focused brother has something to say about it.-IMDB

 Its hard to go into Sabrina after seeing the original and not make a comparison.  It is a remake after all.  I saw the original Sabrina with Audrey Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart and William Holden a little over a year ago.  This year, this 1995 version that a few of you had mention you enjoyed more, landed on Netflix and what better time to add it to this line-up. Now, its hard to not be skeptical with a perfect cast like the original’s to go to watching Julia Ormond, Harrison Ford and especially Greg Kinnear.  I always think the expectations you walk into a movie affects how you evaluate it.  This might seem like a ramble but this cast, while still rather charming, doesn’t seem to match up quite so much.  With lesser expectations despite the talented cast, I tried to stay optimistic.


1995 Sabrina is set in the 90s with the plot being widely the same thing.  The story has not too many flaws and if anything, the remake focuses a bit more on Sabrina and Linus’s relationship than the previous.  My memory could be playing games with me. Let’s put it this way from what I remember of the 1950s version to this one. What the original did well, this one lacks a little bit more on. For example, this one builds well on the story to give its character some chemistry but on casting and acting wise, Julia Ormond has a hard time comparing to Audrey Hepburn.  Harrison Ford is alright as Linus.  He can be serious and a ruthless businessman.  No issues pulling that off but he can also be that man that changes into something more. However, Those two aren’t even my issues, Greg Kinnear was exactly as I expected, he didn’t match up to William Holden’s charm.  The role of David Larrabee is a man of style and charm.  He is all about fun and games and irresponsible.  You know, the lesser son in a rich family that splurges on things and never steps in the office.  I fully believe that if I lived in the 1950s, William Holden could sweep me off my feet any day. I mean, he’s be the fantasy guy that Sabrina would dream about, who knew the perfect way to woo a girl into his bed.  Greg Kinnear…not so much. He’s not a bad actor but he just doesn’t fit the role. I mean, Sabrina had more chemistry and I honestly liked the French photographer guy who liked her in Paris more than when she was with David.


However, this remake has a few things going for it. One, it keeps a very elegant and charming music to match its scenes.  And two, it gives focus to Linus’s character more.  Harrison Ford is not Humphrey Bogart but they both have a different style to add to the character.  For me, while Harrison Ford doesn’t do the same as Bogart’s portrayal, I actually do like it a little more. Maybe its because we are given time to warm up to him.  Plus, the way the shots were done with their interaction really makes it deepen a relationship that both of them, especially Linus didn’t realize was happening. Those little nuances that they played with worked really well.


I’m talking a lot about the characters for this one and its really all I have to say about it.  A remake is so similar in the storyline except for the decade that changes makes it hard to comment on .  Sabrina is like the ugly duckling mixed Cinderella and it works for me.  I can’t quite decide which I prefer more.  I actually think that other than my extremely love with Audrey Hepburn and a better portrayal of William Holden that makes me want to watch Sabrina, I still think that this remake is a little more fun to watch (and maybe a little goofy and cheesy also).

Have you seen the original? How about this remake? Did you like it? 

Valentine’s Marathon: The Last Song (2012)

The Last Song maybe hold the personal record of a DVD I’ve owned and haven’t seen for the longest amount of time.  Part of the reason I pushed forward for this marathon is so that I make myself watch it.  When this movie first was released, I went out and got the novel to read.  The novel didn’t disappoint at all and I actually enjoyed it but unlike Dear John where I could picture their lead roles as the couple, I could not picture Miley Cyrus in the lead role here…I just couldn’t.  Let me just say, my expectations are EXTREMELY low.  So, really, this movie cannot suck more than it does in my mind already.  I’m trying to stay objective as I push play…Maybe there will be a surprise waiting for me 🙂

the last song posterDirector: Julie Anne Robinson

Cast: Miley Cyrus, Liam Hemsworth, Greg Kinnear, Bobby Coleman, Kelly Preston, Hallock Beals

Ronnie (Miley Cyrus) and her brother Danny (Bobby Coleman) are sent to spend the summer with their dad (Greg Kinnear) in his beach house.  While Danny looked forward to the quality time with his dad, Ronnie had trouble with her parents separation and dreaded having to face it.  After a little spilled milkshake incident on the beach, she meets Will, a beach volleyball player/mechanic worker/volunteer at the local aquarium. As they bond over protecting the sea turtle eggs by the beach house, they begin to see they both can open each other’s hearts and this allows Ronnie to see the music and passion for piano that she’s hidden in her for so long.  With the growing passion, her connection with her dad also starts to build again.

the last song miley cyrus liam hemsworth

At the point in time, I’ve learned that if you are to sit through a Nicholas Sparks books, you have to be ready for the cheesy lines.  I’m actually okay with that because I’m a pretty cheesy person to start with.  I am a cheesy romantic, I’ve admitted that.  Thats probably why I can find enjoyment, even in the slightest for each of these movies so far.  I liked the book so obviously, the story here wasn’t going to be my problem.  And it wasn’t.  With the last year or so getting into knowing about movies and exploring that world so much more, I’ve grown to know a lot more actors and their works.  One of those is definitely Greg Kinnear.  I haven’t seen him play big roles but in the previous stuff I’ve seen him in, he is always entertaining to watch and in this one, I actually found that he was possibly the best one of the whole crew.  The rest of the cast is due to young green actors.

(L-R) Greg Kinnear, Bobby Coleman

With that said, first up, lets take a look at Liam Hemsworth.  I have to say that the Hemsworth brother has been blessed with some very fantastic genes because although I do believe Chris  Hemsworth is just awesome manly, Liam Hemsworth does have a boyish charm.  Of course, I’m talking about this role and not say, his more manly charms in The Hunger Games.  Still, as one of the earlier roles that he did, I liked it a lot.  He definitely added to my enjoyment of The Last Song.

the last song piano

But we all know that as much as he was the love interest, the back story here is something of a soul searching experience for our dear Miley Cyrus’s character, Ronnie.  Let me confess that I have not seen any Miley Cyrus.  I never got on board with the Hannah Montana thing.  I even had to search to make sure it was actually that that she was playing.  Either way, I don’t really think Miley Cyrus was ever meant to act because she really didn’t do it for me.  Which comes to the point that her acting almost brings down the whole movie.  Plus, she wasn’t really how I pictured Ronnie as I was reading it.  Thats the problem with doing book adaptations, right?

As much as I didn’t like Miley Cyrus, the movie has some really nice back music.  The actual “last song” was pretty awesome that I’m planning on finding the sheet music for it.  I included the song up there in case you wanted to hear it.  I play the piano so I’m a sucker for piano music in movies.  Also, as always I enjoyed the side story with Ronnie’s dad in the picture with family and loss.  The story is a basic troubled teenager soul searching experience and finding the courage to follow your passions and doing what your heart wants and doing things for yourself.  It has a nice message 🙂

I hate to be sounding like I’m hating on the movies every single time (in regards to Nicholas Sparks adaptations) but seriously since I had really low expectations, this one turned out a lot better than I had expected.  Greg Kinnear, the little brother (played by Bobby Coleman) and Liam Hemsworth all do a great job to keep this alive and because of the novel, they do have some nice dialogue and quotes here and there but if you do intend to watch this, just remember that I warned you about Miley Cyrus.  I could picture so many other girls that could’ve excelled in that role instead of her but well, whats done is done…

Have you seen The Last Song? Any thoughts? What do you think of Greg Kinnear/Liam Hemsworth?

And today is the double review day 😉 The next Nicholas Sparks adaptation coming up in the afternoon…be sure to come back to check it out!

You’ve Got Mail (1998)

Half way through this week and its full of Burlington restaurant reviews and pictures, etc. I wanted to get in a quick movie review to shake things up a bit.  So I decided to go into my tablet and continue working on all the movies I had there.  I was in the mood for some Meg Ryan so here we go…You’ve Got Mail was pretty much my only option.

You've Got Mail posterDirector: Nora Ephron

Cast: Meg Ryan, Tom Hanks, Greg Kinnear

Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) owns a little children’s book store which she had passed down to her from her mother.  However, a business threat appears when Fox Books decide to move in down the block  where they still discounted books with larger variety and more accessibility.  Before Fox Bookstore opens, she met Joe Fox (Tom Hanks) who didn’t reveal his identity immediately until later on.  With this, they both provoked each other to be their worst selves as Kathleen fights to save her business.  On the side, she also has an unknown identity online friend who she pours her heart out to in emails until Joe realizes that the rival she saw in Kathleen was actually the same charming woman he was talking to online.

Destiny, fate, love-hate relationship hidden behind an unknown relationship sort of story seems to be very normal and cliche.  This movie has a lot of cheesy and generic moments but for me and the amount of romantic comedies I’ve watched in the last 5 years, everything gets predictable after a while.

you've got mail kathleen1

What really did it for me in this one was the actors themselves.  The cast was fantastic.  Meg Ryan is charming as always in the role of Kathleen Kelly.  I love her casual and carefree but slightly shy and fear of expressing herself type of character.  We see her character progress until the guidance of her online friend how to stand up for herself.  The character’s emotions and passion for her career made me get attached to her side of the story.  Meg Ryan is definitely an actress I adore.  I’ve said it before in my movie review back in February of French Kiss.  I think even I started falling in love with the characters she plays, the charm that she carries is just amazing.

you've got mail joe

I’ve rarely seen Tom Hanks doing romantic comedies and after looking at his list of movies that he’s done, he hasn’t really done any except for Sleepless in Seattle.  I only remember glimpses of that movie since I saw it when I was younger.  Tom Hanks playing Joe Fox made me want to punch his face whenever he engaged into a provoking conversation with Meg Ryan’s character for a good part of the movie.  Then when he communicates with her via email, suddenly he turns into this sweet man.  I call that really good acting.  He made me grow to like his character as we learned a bit more about the life of Joe Fox and as the story progressed.

you've got mail joe+kathleen

Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks has such attractive chemistry between the two.  Every time they are on screen together they drag you into their argument or conversation.  Its really pretty awesome how they are just so good at what they do.  Most of the time, good chemistry in a romantic comedy is what makes it a success.

To me, You’ve Got Mail may not be the most original rom-com that I’ve seen, but it sure was fun to watch.  The chemistry between Meg Ryans and Tom Hanks is almost incomparable to any other on screen couple and it leads this flick to be considered a success for me .  It made me crave to want to watch it again even though I had just finished it.

Oh, by the way, this has officially made me go on a mission (my boyfriend laughed at me when I said this) to search up ALL of Meg Ryan’s movies.  For a Meg Ryan fan, I have a lot more of her movies to catch up with.  So the mission is on! If I ever manage it all, I’ll do a marathon or something. Anyone want to join in?

I’ve already talked about Meg Ryan before but Tom Hanks! I’ve actually seen a lot of his movies, not all but some. What is your favorite Tom Hanks movie?