After appearing most recently in Gary Marshall’s Valentine’s Day, Julia Roberts is jumping right back on the rom-com bandwagon with Eat, Pray, Love – which is based on the memoirs of Elizabeth Gilbert. Unhappy with her marriage, Elizabeth decides to devote some time to herself and travels to Italy, India, and Bali. Sony has released the first official trailer for the film, which you can watch below.
I’m taking the high road here: I won’t dismiss this film outright. The movie seems to disregard the tropes of a typical romantic comedy in favor of a road to self-discovery, which has the potential to be a refreshing change in an increasingly tired genre. Warning: Javier Bardem’s brief appearance in the trailer might undercut this point in the final film, but hopefully the filmmakers reward the individuality of Roberts’ character instead of resting on the crutch of a standard Hollywood ending. (Note: I haven’t read the book, so I don’t know how it ends.)
For me, the most interesting aspect of Eat, Pray, Love is that its director. Ryan Murphy, creator of television shows Nip/Tuck and Glee, is stepping behind the camera for his first feature since 2006’s Running with Scissors. I’m a fan of Glee, and since that show does a nice job of subverting expectations for a high school musical, perhaps Murphy (who is also co-writing) can bring those same sensibilities to the big screen with this project.
One more brief tidbit: Elizabeth Gilbert’s trip around the world was funded by an advance she received to write the book version of Eat, Pray, Love. If the writers include this fact in the film’s storyline, would such a “meta” reference be a first for a movie of this kind? The “will they, won’t they” aspect is one of the (very few) things that could separate this movie from others like it.
The film will be released on August 13th, 2010. So what do you think of Eat, Pray, Love? Anybody else think this at least has the potential to break the “rom-com dramedy” mold?