Notting Hill Dream Trip with Hugh Grant

Posted on May 2, 2018 at 1:39 pm

Copyright OMAZE 2018

Hugh Grant wants to take some lucky fan to Notting Hill! OMAZE, the charitable fund-raiser with the starriest prizes, is offering a true “Notting Hill” experience with the writer/director, Richard Curtis (also of “Four Weddings and a Funeral,” “Love, Actually,” and “About Time”) and actor Hugh Grant.

If you are the winner, you and a friend will:
*Visit the sites from Notting Hill with writer Richard Curtis, including the bookshop and famous blue door
*Have a picnic with THE William Thacker, aka Hugh Grant, in the park from the movie
*Stay in The Ritz Hotel, enjoy a full English breakfast and be treated to a 3-course dinner in their Michelin-starred restaurant
*Get flown out to London and put up in The Ritz

It’s just $10 to enter!

Related Tags:

 

Contests and Giveaways

How Do Movies Show Time Passing?

Posted on July 22, 2014 at 8:00 am

Someone once said that movies are “pieces of time.” A few take place in “real time.” Alfred Hitchcock’s experiment, “Rope,” unfolds in just the time it takes us to watch it, all in what appears to be one seamless shot. But others take place over days, weeks, years, even generations.

Slavko Vorkapich was the Hollywood pioneer who established the cinematic language of the passage of time. Whenever you see calendar pages falling or clock hands turning, that is his influence.

I was honored to be included in Criticwire’s survey asking film critics about their favorite depictions of the passage of time in movies. Watch a year pass in “Notting Hill.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMK3dZ_drvI

I wrote about the clever way they showed each school term passing in Bing Crosby’s 1960 film “High Times,” directed by Black Edwards, in 101 Must-See Movie Moments.

And watch many years go by and a marriage disintegrate in “Citizen Kane.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RamGMa9Sb1U

 

Related Tags:

 

Film History Understanding Media and Pop Culture

Are Romantic Comedies Bad for Real-Life Romance?

Posted on December 17, 2008 at 8:00 am

Do romantic comedies create and foster impossible expectations? Are women doomed to disappointment when no man can possibly measure up to Lloyd Dobbler (Say Anything), William Thacker (Notting Hill) or Joe Fox (You’ve Got Mail) — or Cary Grant in anything?

Researchers at the Family and Personal Relationships Laboratory at Heriot Watt University in Scotland have concluded that may be the problem. In a new paper about the influence of romantic movies on people’s expectations about relationships, the researchers studied 40 films released between 1995 and 2005 and found that they conveyed to those in the audience a sense that the best relationships achieved a level of understanding that did not require the kind of communication that is necessary for real-life relationships.

Dr. Bjarne Holmes, who led the research, said: “We are not being killjoys – we are not saying that people shouldn’t watch these movies. But we are saying that it would be helpful if people were more aware and more critical of the messages in these films. The problem is that while most of us know that the idea of a perfect relationship is unrealistic, some of us are still more influenced by media portrayals than we realize.”

There are related studies on romance novels and one by Holmes on couple-oriented sitcoms (“In search of my “one-and-only”: Romance-oriented media and beliefs in romantic relationship destiny”). And Holmes is now asking for participants for an online follow-up study.

I do not believe anyone takes or should take these studies any more seriously than they take relationship advice from Julia Roberts movies. In other words, both are fun and sometimes provocative and can even offer genuine insights that can help illuminate relationship issues — finding the courage to take a risk, making love the top priority of your life, valuing yourself enough to value others — but by definition, movies have to take short-cuts to indicate important passages in a relationship or we’d be there for weeks. That’s what a montage is all about — we see the couple splashing each other on the beach and marveling over the goodies at an outdoor market while some sprightly pop song plays on the soundtrack and we accept that they are in love; that doesn’t mean we expect that in our own lives. This goes back way before movies. Even Shakespeare had to save time by having his lovers fall for each other at first sight, though he at least had them describe it beautifully.

I would guess that there’s something of a chicken and egg problem here. Those audience members who are attracted to romantic comedies (especially some of the second-rate ones in this study) are likely to have more of a tendency to, well, romanticize. But if they are really paying attention, they will see that one of the most important messages in any romantic film is that the best way to see those movies is while sharing popcorn with someone you love — and that the best part is talking to that person about it afterward.

If you are careful in observing the lessons from movies and other great stories about love in books, plays, operas, songs, and even paintings, you can find a true soulmate who makes all of the relationship ups and downs into life’s greatest adventure, someone who laughs with you, listens to you, and inspires you, and still holds hands when you go to the movies after more than 30 years. I’ve been lucky enough to find someone who is all of that and more.

Related Tags:

 

Commentary Understanding Media and Pop Culture
THE MOVIE MOM® is a registered trademark of Nell Minow. Use of the mark without express consent from Nell Minow constitutes trademark infringement and unfair competition in violation of federal and state laws. All material © Nell Minow 1995-2024, all rights reserved, and no use or republication is permitted without explicit permission. This site hosts Nell Minow’s Movie Mom® archive, with material that originally appeared on Yahoo! Movies, Beliefnet, and other sources. Much of her new material can be found at Rogerebert.com, Huffington Post, and WheretoWatch. Her books include The Movie Mom’s Guide to Family Movies and 101 Must-See Movie Moments, and she can be heard each week on radio stations across the country.

Website Designed by Max LaZebnik