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THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY 
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Post THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Click here for the review of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

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Tue Dec 24, 2013 5:51 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
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Is the underlying premise of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty too "innocent" for a 2013 film? The story is about a meek office worker who lives vicariously through the photographic negatives he processes at Life magazine. When a prized photo - the one designated for the cover of the final print issue of the magazine - is missing, Walter is forced to go on a real-life adventure to locate the photographer. Along the way, he finds himself and gains a new appreciation of life. Films of this sort may have worked well in a "simpler" era but this one could have difficulty finding an audience in a time when a defining social characteristic is cynicism


Therein lies the problem. As one who has seen the original Mitty and read James Thurber's short story, I can state that a straightforward remake would not work at all in this era. Although the concept of an office worker fantasizing to except the banality of life still works. In fact, I made a short movie with that premise (albeit not based on Mitty, this one had the protagonist imagining he was applying for a job as a pirate).

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Tue Dec 24, 2013 6:30 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
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Is the underlying premise of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty too "innocent" for a 2013 film? The story is about a meek office worker who lives vicariously through the photographic negatives he processes at Life magazine.


Is this not a bit of misreading of the original story. Thurber's mini story is highly pessimistic and actually quite depressing as there is no escape from modern life and conformity grinding you down into insignificance while Stiller has seemed to flipped it on it's head with a new age self esteem parable that anything is possible. A closer version to Thurber's story would be Terry Gilliam's Brazil.


Quote:
Kristen Wiig tones down some of her more annoying comedic mannerisms to present an attractive and appealing Cheryl.


I am glad I am not the only one that finds her annoying in that way too.


Wed Dec 25, 2013 5:02 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Definitely disagree on Wiig, I don't find her "annoying" at all, I tihnk she's hilarious, though this does seem like a rather odd film choice for her.


Wed Dec 25, 2013 5:09 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Saw this yesterday in spite of the mostly lackluster reviews, and I'm glad I did. I really enjoyed it. As someone who works in an office and often lives vicariously through the movies, I could certainly relate to the title character and found his character arc thought-provoking and inspiring. Based on the comments I overheard by others seated around me at the theater, it seemed like a real crowd pleaser. Stiller is perfect in the role, and I liked his choices as a director, especially his visuals. It has lots of gorgeous scenery to look at, likable characters, and a cool indie rock soundtrack. It's no Wolf of Wall Street, certainly, but I'd give it a solid 3 stars. Worth seeing if you like the trailer.


Sat Dec 28, 2013 7:23 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Agree with Darth Ed; I saw it a couple of days ago and really enjoyed it. Because of the reviews I went in not expecting much, and I tend to prefer realistic, mundane stories like the original short story. But this movie had a great story, interesting characters, and some fabulously weird set pieces. (My favorite of these was one in the globe-trekking sequence involving a helicopter and a classic David Bowie song). I had hoped the ending would be a bit more downbeat, but you know? Sometimes it's nice to win one.


Tue Dec 31, 2013 4:36 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
SketchesbyBoze wrote:
Agree with Darth Ed; I saw it a couple of days ago and really enjoyed it. Because of the reviews I went in not expecting much, and I tend to prefer realistic, mundane stories like the original short story. But this movie had a great story, interesting characters, and some fabulously weird set pieces. (My favorite of these was one in the globe-trekking sequence involving a helicopter and a classic David Bowie song). I had hoped the ending would be a bit more downbeat, but you know? Sometimes it's nice to win one.


The ending was bittersweet for me, which I liked.
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Walter and Cheryl lost their jobs, a great magazine is dead (at least as a print medium), but Walter and Cheryl do have a pretty good shot at love.

Stiller and Wiig are really nice together, and I love the sequence you mentioned. The movie as a whole is a bit messy, but at its best is stunning.

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Wed Jan 01, 2014 8:31 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Syd Henderson wrote:
SketchesbyBoze wrote:
Agree with Darth Ed; I saw it a couple of days ago and really enjoyed it. Because of the reviews I went in not expecting much, and I tend to prefer realistic, mundane stories like the original short story. But this movie had a great story, interesting characters, and some fabulously weird set pieces. (My favorite of these was one in the globe-trekking sequence involving a helicopter and a classic David Bowie song). I had hoped the ending would be a bit more downbeat, but you know? Sometimes it's nice to win one.


The ending was bittersweet for me, which I liked.
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Walter and Cheryl lost their jobs, a great magazine is dead (at least as a print medium), but Walter and Cheryl do have a pretty good shot at love.

Stiller and Wiig are really nice together, and I love the sequence you mentioned. The movie as a whole is a bit messy, but at its best is stunning.

Personally I don't really like downbeat endings much in films(unless the film is based on a true story) so i'm glad to hear that this film dosen't go down that route.


Wed Jan 01, 2014 9:03 pm
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
[Reveal] Spoiler:
In his review, James writes that Adam Scott's character gets no comeuppance. I don't think that's entirely accurate. Because at the end, Mitty, finally gets the courage to stand up to him and calls him out, in front of the entire office as well. Sure, you could argue, well since Mitty had already been fired, he had nothing to loose, but I would still call that a victory for Mitty. Plus, I actually think he got to the guy, if you look at Scott's face while Mitty is telling him that while he gets he's just doing his job, he doesn't have to be a dick about it, I actually think Mitty's words really got to him. It's a great scene IMO.

I also love the irony that Mitty goes through all of these adventures to find the Sean Penn character to find out where the missing negative is, and he had it on him the whole time. Really funny.



I really loved this movie. It just got to me in a way few films do. It's quite moving yet rather low key as well. And the cinematography is so unbelievably gorgeous. It's my favorite movie of the year so far, although I still have plenty to see (wolf of wall street, saving mr. banks, lone survivor, her, the hobbit: the desolation of smaug, dallas buyers club, nebraska among several others). When all is said and done, I think this will remain in my top 5 of the year. This is also probably tied with Greenberg as Stiller's best performance. And it's DEFINITELY Stiller's best directorial effort. As a director, Stiller was hit or miss with me. Wasn't a fan of Tropic Thunder or Zoolander but I did like The Cable Guy and Reality Bites. But this is easily the best movie he's directed, though I did love Bites quite a bit as well. It's close between those two, but Walter Mitty comes out on top IMO.


Sat Jan 04, 2014 7:10 am
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Syd Henderson wrote:
The ending was bittersweet for me, which I liked.
[Reveal] Spoiler:
Walter and Cheryl lost their jobs, a great magazine is dead (at least as a print medium), but Walter and Cheryl do have a pretty good shot at love.

Stiller and Wiig are really nice together, and I love the sequence you mentioned. The movie as a whole is a bit messy, but at its best is stunning.


I also loved the ending, for the reason you mentioned, in that it was bittersweet, and:

[Reveal] Spoiler:
I think we would've all guessed it would be Walter's photo, and I was half-expecting it to be a bit mawkish, but it really moved me. The actual picture was very evocative, and together with the accompanying words, it really moved me and brought a lump to my throat.


ilovemovies wrote:
[Reveal] Spoiler:
In his review, James writes that Adam Scott's character gets no comeuppance. I don't think that's entirely accurate. Because at the end, Mitty, finally gets the courage to stand up to him and calls him out, in front of the entire office as well. Sure, you could argue, well since Mitty had already been fired, he had nothing to loose, but I would still call that a victory for Mitty. Plus, I actually think he got to the guy, if you look at Scott's face while Mitty is telling him that while he gets he's just doing his job, he doesn't have to be a dick about it, I actually think Mitty's words really got to him. It's a great scene IMO.

I also love the irony that Mitty goes through all of these adventures to find the Sean Penn character to find out where the missing negative is, and he had it on him the whole time. Really funny.



I really loved this movie. It just got to me in a way few films do. It's quite moving yet rather low key as well. And the cinematography is so unbelievably gorgeous. It's my favorite movie of the year so far, although I still have plenty to see (wolf of wall street, saving mr. banks, lone survivor, her, the hobbit: the desolation of smaug, dallas buyers club, nebraska among several others). When all is said and done, I think this will remain in my top 5 of the year. This is also probably tied with Greenberg as Stiller's best performance. And it's DEFINITELY Stiller's best directorial effort. As a director, Stiller was hit or miss with me. Wasn't a fan of Tropic Thunder or Zoolander but I did like The Cable Guy and Reality Bites. But this is easily the best movie he's directed, though I did love Bites quite a bit as well. It's close between those two, but Walter Mitty comes out on top IMO.


I agree with everything you said, including and especially the spoiler. I might not rank it as one of my favorites of the year, but it was a really nice film. On this being Ben Stiller's best directorial effort, I don't know. I really loved Tropic Thunder, and that was a riskier film than this one. I strongly disliked Zoolander, so that's out. On balance, I would still say TT is his best effort yet. But this is definitely his best performance that I've seen.

Jeff Wilder wrote:
Quote:
Is the underlying premise of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty too "innocent" for a 2013 film? The story is about a meek office worker who lives vicariously through the photographic negatives he processes at Life magazine. When a prized photo - the one designated for the cover of the final print issue of the magazine - is missing, Walter is forced to go on a real-life adventure to locate the photographer. Along the way, he finds himself and gains a new appreciation of life. Films of this sort may have worked well in a "simpler" era but this one could have difficulty finding an audience in a time when a defining social characteristic is cynicism


Therein lies the problem. As one who has seen the original Mitty and read James Thurber's short story, I can state that a straightforward remake would not work at all in this era. Although the concept of an office worker fantasizing to except the banality of life still works. In fact, I made a short movie with that premise (albeit not based on Mitty, this one had the protagonist imagining he was applying for a job as a pirate).


I would say that is precisely why I loved this film. We live in an era where cynicism is rife. Every other person I meet is cynical about life, and I for only heavily dislike that. That is why I think I really enjoyed this film.

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Sun Jan 05, 2014 10:16 am
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Post Re: THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
When i saw it a while back i like the first half more than the second half. It was a nice pleasant deversion.


Mon Feb 03, 2014 8:37 pm
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