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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Report Card---Celeste And Jesse Forever"

"Celeste and Jesse Forever" is a chick-flick.
You can tell that because Rashida Jones is the lead actress, co writer, and, I think producer.
She was definitely the muscle of this picture.
She is very young, which helps make this a very young chick-flick.
Add to this that the male lead is Andy Samberg, late of Saturday Night Live, doing nothing that might have made him funny on SNL.
He plays Rashida's love interest, with the added bonus of his character wanting to have a baby, while she doesn't.
This is a classic chick-flick point of view.
Grown men are, to my knowledge, never the prime movers for wanting to have a baby.
So this obviously is not a movie designed for my enjoyment.
Early on, it is established that they are getting divorced, but are remaining the best of friends.
Something that always happens in my world.
When you call a picture "Celeste and Jesse Forever", it's either meant sincerely, or ironically.
In any case, it becomes completely formulaic.
Boy meets girl, boy loses girl----and then several choices are left, each entirely unsatisfying.

1- Boy gets girl. We may be rooting for this one, but it is entirely predictable.
2- Boy or girl starts dying, a la "Love Story", or "Terms of Endearment"
Depressing, and also predictable.
3- Boy never gets girl again. This one is just simply disappointing.

I'll give you a clue without it being a spoiler alert.
It's one of the above three.
Which is why this is bad storytelling.

On to the scoring:

Is it interesting?

It's not uninteresting. That's as far as I can take it.


Compelling even?


Is it controversial?


Is it a story worth telling?

Not that I can see.

Is it good storytelling?

No, for the above reasons.

Is it well written?

The dialogue is okay.


Is it well cast? Well played?, Well shot?

No better than average in all respects.

Is it too long? Too short?

The length wasn't a problem. It was only 90 minutes.

Is it believable? Do you care about the characters?

Not really, and not really.

Is it predictable? Does it surprise you?

It's predictable, except for determining which of the predictable ways they were going.

Do you think about it after you've seen it?

I didn't give it a thought.

Is it funny?

Only on rare occasions.

Would it have been worth the thirteen bucks it would have cost to see it in the movies?

No chance.

Is it impressive ?

Not in the least.

Overall grade: C-.

I've seen worse movies, and I've seen far better movies.
Not an auspicious debut for the Report Card Season.


My books ,"Show Runner" and it's sequel,"Show Runner Two", can be found at the Amazon Kindle Store.
Along with the newer ones, "The Man Is Dead", and "Report Cards".
You can search by typing in my name, Cindy Williams, Laverne & Shirley, The Odd Couple, or Happy Days.
Check them out.
You don't need a Kindle machine to download them.
Just get the free app from Kindle, and they can be downloaded to an IPhone, IPad, or Blackberry.
The paperback, "Mark Rothman's Essays" is still available for people without Kindle.
I have many readings and signings remaining, and the thing about Kindle is you can't sign one.
If you'd like one, contact me at
And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne & Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube.




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About Me

Hi. I am, according to my Wikipedia entry,(which I did not create) a noted television writer, playwright, screenwriter, and occasional actor. You can Google me or go to the IMDB to get my credits, and you can come here to get my opinions on things, which I'll try to express eloquently. Hopefully I'll succeed. You can also e-mail me at Perhaps my biggest claim to fame is being responsible, for about six months in 1975, while Head Writer for the "Happy Days" TV series, for Americans saying to each other "Sit on it."