Sunday, April 18, 2004

I'm sorry they only got "Engelbert Humperdinck Yodeling ABBA Hits" available.

The movie, 50 First Dates is that other great movie I kept putting off from watching till I got enough of The Passion of the Christ. It's a pretty good movie considering its formulaic slant. It's also a reunion of sorts for the original tandem that made The Wedding Singer work, except for a few changes involving actors for the lead character's sidekick and his cross-dressing co-worker, Alexa (Lusia Strus), who has fallen in lust with the lead character. It tells the story of a smooth playah, Henry Roth (Adam Sandler), who romances a string of attractive women with deceptive words and occupations, until he meets a sweet, simple and innocent young woman named Lucy Whitmore (Drew Barrymore) in a diner. Henry's main occupation is a marine life veterinarian for the Sea Life Park in Hawaii and was on his way to the Antarctic to study the Walruses when his boat conked out on him leading him to meet the person who would change his life forever.

When Henry asks Lucy out, Sue (Amy Hill), knowing his reputation with women warns him from seeing her again. She's a good friend of Lucy's mother and she's looking out for her charge who happens to suffer from a unique case of amnesia. She explains to Henry that Lucy met a car accident with her father almost a year before causing her to bump her head and permanently damage one part of her brain that processes new information. So everything she remembers from the past leads only to the day of that fateful accident and everything she sees, does, and knows henceforth gets erased from her memory the day after. So what Henry does basically is to introduce himself and court her everyday, changing his playboy attitude into that of genuine care and concern. At first her father, Marlin (Blake Clark) and brother, Doug (Sean Astin) won't have none of it and kept an eagle's eye on Henry. It is his insistence that finally cleared the way with Lucy's family, allowing him to gain their trust. Henry's best friend and confidante, Ula (Rob Schneider) helps him along the way, offerng moral support and what-not since he can only live out his dating fantasies through his friend's love life. Together they create video documentaries explaining things and events Lucy have missed out ever since the accident ending with his profession to help her overcome her problem and a promise to love her forever. Though it is painful on both Henry and Lucy's family to do this everyday, they stand with her as she reels from the shocking revelation. That is until one day Lucy decides to break up with her persistent loverboy thinking she's holding him back from fulfilling his dreams and having a normal life. As expected, those concerned were able to hurdle impossible obstacles enough to end the movie on a happy note for everyone.

It's also worth mentioning that the soundtrack's really good and, like the aforementioned movie, it features popular songs from the 1980s remade by new artists (like The Cars' "Drive" was remade by Ziggy Marley, Roxy Music's "Slave To Love" remade by Elan Atias, The Cure's "Love Song" was remade by 311, etc.). I don't know about the other 80s music fans but I'm sort of indifferent with the remade songs. Well, except for Seal's remake of the Echo and the Bunnymen original "Lips Like Sugar," those others haven't sunk in enough for me to like it. It also features one Adam Sandler original song called "Forgetful Lucy " but it's also not as memorable his previous "Grow Old With You." Also, of interest is the presence of some same featured bands and songs in both soundtracks like: The Police songs "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" and "Every Breath You Take"; Psychedelic Furs songs "Love My Way" and "Ghost In You"; and two versions of the Thompson Twins' "Hold Me Now." Also, the previous movie's soundtrack featured one remake and full originals and the soundtrack for this movie features one original and full remakes. But despite the many parallels I still like this movie (and the soundtrack) enough to buy a DVD copy for my video library, I just hope that Mr. Sandler doesn't repeat it in his future projects.

* Check out also the review in Hollywood Jesus for more insightful reactions to this great movie.

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