James Leroy Wilson's blog

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Meryl Streep, The River Wild, Office Space and Rating Movies

The other night, The River Wild came on tv. It's one of the few movies in which Meryl Streep was not nominated for an Oscar.

I didn't re-watch the movie because of other plans, but I easily could have.

As I recall, the movie was judged to be about about 2 1/2 stars by critics when it came out.

When I saw it come across this past week, the Dish Network rated it 3 1/2 stars.

I'd go one bit further: this is the only Meryl Streep movie that anyone would want to see twice.

To the extent The River Wild was panned at the time, it was because it was formulaic. Also, I believe, it had to do with the oddity of Kevin Bacon playing a creep and the, well, odd screen presence of David Straithairn as Streep's husband. The performances were too odd to be believed at the time.

Over time, however, the movie has seemed to age well. The public is accustomed to Bacon in a variety of roles, including villains. They're more familiar with Straithairn.

What was once seemingly odd casting is now a case of classic casting. Those three actors made the movie.

And this thriller is a repeatedly-watchable movie. Unlike most of the period dramas Streep is known for.

I believe, those who are honest with themselves , would say The River Wild is their favorite Streep movie.

The 3.5 stars as opposed to 2.5 stars reflects this. Over time, critics and the public realized The River Wild was a better movie than previously acknowledged.

So imagine the shock and dismay when I went through channels today and saw that the Dish Network still rates Office Space at 2.5 stars.

At minimum, it's one of the ten most important movies of the 1990's.

1 comment:

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