Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Heart and Souls

I remember watching Heart and Souls when I was a kid and loving it, but I remembered nothing about it. I mean nothing. I discovered it again while on my mission to watch Robert Downey Jr. movies.

Heart and Souls is a delightful film that really reminds me of the old romance movies and comedies that were made in the fifties; there is just an innocent carefree spirit about it that makes it a delight to watch.

The film begins in 1959 when Thomas’s parents are on the way to the hospital to have their first baby; however, they are delayed in doing so by a bus accident that kills Harrison, Penny, Julia and Milo, four individuals that should not have died yet. Since it is well before their time of death they are given a chance to complete their lives by using Thomas, who was born in his parents car when they were delayed by the accident – the only problem is they don’t know this until Thomas is in his thirties. They spent his childhood as his “imaginary” friends that only he could see, until his parents fear he has mental problems and they make themselves invisible to Thomas too. When they are finally told that Thomas was supposed to be their helper to finish their lives Milo, Harrison, Julia and Penny reveal themselves to Thomas again – to his shock.

No one in the film is bad; every character is played in such a way that they are endearing and memorable. However, the true shining star of this film is of course Robert Downey Jr. This film is his follow-up to Chaplin and again proves how vastly talented the man is. At one point in the film each of the ghosts enters his body and he takes on their characteristics and mannerisms: without skipping a beat he is capable of becoming a small town girl, black woman, a repressed musician with stage fright and a crook. It was brilliant to watch.

I do recommend this movie because it’s a very refreshing, light, fun, clean, genuine, actor driven, romantic comedy that really does feel pulled out of another era.

Director: Ron Underwood
Writers: Brent Maddock, S.S. Wilson, Gregory Hansen, & Erik Hansen
Thomas: Robert Downey Jr.
Harrison: Charles Grodin
Penny: Alfre Woodard
Julia: Kyra Sedgwick
Milo: Tom Sizemore
Hal the Bus Driver: David Paymer
Anne: Elizabeth Shue

Harrison: Who came up with this ridiculous concept anyway? Resolve your entire life in one bold stroke? What if I fail? And I will. I'll fail. I'm telling you. I always fail. Then my whole life will be a complete failure.
Thomas: No offense, Harrison. But you died a failure because you never tried.

No comments: