Originally entitled Remember The Daze, The Beautiful Ordinary is a story surrounding an entire class who look for ways to enjoy nights, and occasional days in the summer of 1999.
I was for some reason rather interested in seeing this movie, that offered a snapshot of teenage life in 1999, but my eagerness never paid off having watched the best part of 100 minutes of movie that as far as I could see never had much of a story, and had far too many similar looking characters in it to tell them apart; the result I could not honestly remember one of the characters names.
The basis of the story seemed to be the fact that every single one of these middle teens were heavily into drug taking, alcohol, and sex. And sadly the story never elevates from this level. I found the whole thing rather disappointing, especially the fact that in small town America the director assumes that every single child is heavily into drugs, I don’t live in the states but am pretty sure that this is not the case. The director in question, who also wrote the movie Jess Manafort is apparently some sort of protg and supported by Martin Scorsese, looking at pictures of the so called talent it seems that she may very well have had too many drug induced moments that she has lost track of what is reality.
It’s difficult to decide exactly what genre The Beautiful Ordinary falls into, because it’s a sort of blur of drama where nothing at all seems to happen, and comedy that delivers little or no laughs. There are lots of scenes with beautiful young girls lounging around, and on one occasion bathing together being completely stoned and laughing hysterically at things the movie audience clearly cannot see. While I could see the clouds that started as bubbles of bubble bath, and I could see the goose that was sometime real sometimes a statue, I could not for the life of me see any amusement in these things.
As someone who hails from the 70’s, and grew up on 80’s music I’m sick of the abundance of really bad rap music that kids of the day seem to think is “oh so cool” I’m sure it’s a talented skill, but music? Really? The reason I bring this up is due to the fact that The Beautiful Ordinary gives us lots of snippets of music that is regarded obviously as being hip to the kids of the day, and what amazed me was that it was not that long ago that I was still enjoying what is classed as popular music; I loved all the music in the movie, but in fairness that was about all I liked.
The movie should really have been called The Beautiful People, as all the female characters in the movie are absolutely adorable, some of the younger characters have some real untapped flair about them; while the older ones have a sort of edginess about them that really dictates that they should be in higher quality fare. By comparison all the male cast look like they need a really good bath, and to be shown a brush, I’m starting to sound really old here. They unlike the female cast members are less qualified, and seem perfectly justified in being in this movie.
It’s quite sad to sit and watch a movie and really having given it your entire attention, only to realise that by the end you really are no more the wiser about what the movies mission statement (if there was one) was than when the movie first began. But even with this factor worked into the equation The Beautiful Ordinary is not actually one of the worst movies I have seen this year, imagine it a movie with no storyline being far from the worst movie I have seen this year.
There are lots of plot issues that critics are bound to pick up on, cars that were not made at that time, technological revolutions that had yet to occur, underwear fashions not really seen at that time, and the odd musical cock up with songs obviously important to Manafort enough to allow her to let them slip the wrong side of the millennium.
The Beautiful Ordinary despite getting small cinema releases in the US, and is undoubtedly destined for the straight to DVD market in the UK; with a DVD release due in September I guess only time will tell if it gets to see any cinema in the UK, if it does you might be best to wait for the DVD.