Saturday, April 4, 2009

A word regarding the genius of Diane Keaton

Okay. By now you've figured out that I'm a fan of movies from back in the day. (My back in the day, of course, being the seventies and eighties. Not that I don't appreciate the era before that, but I grew up on these, hence my affection for them.) Well, despite my recent discussion of seventies movies, and my poll at the bottom of the page which everyone is ignoring, I have plenty of eighties favorites, too. And this leads me to my point. Did you ever have a movie that, no matter what time it's on, no matter what you may have been thinking of doing, you feel you have to watch it in its entirety? You are literally compelled to watch the whole thing. And you want to, because you like that movie so much that it makes you feel glad to watch it again. Well, I have a few of these, but the first which helped me to identify the phenomenon is Baby Boom. This gem features Diane Keaton as a powerful shoulderpadded NY ad executive who finds herself saddled with a baby through a last-living-relative scenario. She initially intends to rid herself of "it", but becomes enamored instead, and tries to incorporate her new motherhood into her high powered career. This doesn't work out too well, so she hangs it all and moves to a farm in Vermont. The farm looks good on paper, but turns out to be a bit of a wreck, and she becomes despondent away from the city life. With the support of a handsome veterinarian, she gets on her feet and creates a successful business selling the baby food she's been forced to make out of boredom and a bumper crop of fruit from her orchard. She then, of course, gets a chance to meet with her former employers, who want to run her ad campaign, and she sticks it to them.
This movie is great on so many levels. It deals with the women's lib sort of "I can be a mom and work, too" concept that was so prevalent in the eighties, but shows how it can be possible only if a person retains their sense of family while working. And it shows how a woman can do anything on her own, but sometimes needs to realize support is not a bad thing. I would hazard that this is Diane Keaton's finest performance. I'm not kidding. Annie Hall is good, but she is ditsy in it and not a real, strong, independent lady. The Godfather stuff is fine, but it's not her own personal vehicle. And the stuff she's been up to lately doesn't even bear mentioning (crap). So, here's hoping I don't turn on the tv to check the weather some morning and find Baby Boom instead, because then I'll have to miss work, and I don't want to get fired.

1 comment:

  1. I love this movie and I also have to watch it every time it's on!