Saturday, 13 November 2010

eat pray love

undaunted by some less than spectacular reviews for "eat pray love" i went to see it anyhow and was well rewarded for my effort on a cold and wet sydney day.
my most cynical incarnation could agree with the reviewers that it was a story of a woman who went on a self indulgent trip in an attempt to free herself from the guilt of having everything she could want in life but that interpretation would be ungenerous and quite possibly hypocritical. after all, as a member of a self indulgent and self obsessed society i am like most people in believing or hoping that i somehow deserve a fairy tale.
far from viewing the film as a story of a self indulgent extended holiday i loved the element of food porn, the soundtrack, the settings, the clothes.....and of course the romance.
immersing myself in the movie allowed me to imaginatively experience the simple pleasures of a rich life and i'm always happy with that!
i also remember thinking that there was a beautiful spirituality in the film. my companion, a traditionally styled Christian, was quick to point out that the spirituality depicted was not the truth as we understand it but i thought that the spiritual aspect of the film, which showed our journey through life being enhanced by balance, mindfulness, meditation, silence and shifting our focus away from self, was compatible with Christian practices of faith and useful to anyone who seeks a spiritual life in any form.
the plot was not fast moving and the more impatient of viewers might find it frustrating but i thought the pace was great, it allowed me to pay attention to visual and philosophical details and it reflected the often slow and subtle nature of personal growth.
the title "eat pray love" resonates with my greatest challenges and purest joys in life and i enjoyed seeing those challenges and joys played out a cinematic version of someone else's life.


  1. I haven't seen the film but I've read the book and I loved it. She's no more self-indulgent than most of us, as you say, and she was just trying to find ways of being happier, more comfortable in the world and more focussed. What's wrong with that?

    I think a lot of the critics are either men who don't understand women or those who are jealous of her affluence and brains and good fortune.

    I also think her understanding of spirituality is perfectly valid and very compatible with the approaches taken by religious leaders. Her understanding goes much deeper than the usual journalistic travesty of eastern religion.

  2. nick,
    i havent read the book but books are usually better than the film so you probably got the better deal :)
    i thought her aims were noble and ultimately she fulfilled them. i do think that the idea of pursuing meaning through travel is out of reach of many but theres no need to scoff at it, we'd all do it that way if we could.

    it's a couple of weeks since i saw it and i'm left with my general impressions more than with specifics so i hope my comments are true to the actual film.

    the naysayers probably feel threatened by her willingness to explore life through a different lens (as well as her intelligence and affluence!)

  3. If one's balance,integrity and all the other great intangibles we would aspire to can be reached or closed in upon in some way, then why not via a slow moving movie.
    It does allow for self improvment and guards against the "tabloid" mind or mindset.

    Could it be that rushing type people can't stand their own company?

  4. I found the book boring about two chapters into it and left it there. The movie looked too "filmy" for me, but I can appreciate the beauty you found and your immersion in said beauty. I, too, chafe at the categorization of spirituality as narrow and prescribed. Eat, pray, love . . . YES, let's!

  5. how bout eat PLAY love>?????

  6. deb,
    "eat , pray , love ...yes lets"

    thats basically what i wanted to say but it's far too succinct to make a whole post :)

    an excellent trio from you, the only remaining question being in what order???

  7. Sorry Kyles, I haven't seen the film or read the book, but I agree with Debbie a thousand percent! :)

  8. Was glad to see your review of this. I have read the book but I think I would go see the movie just to see what the settings were like.


go on, leave a comment or four.