I Am Sam: Box office and critical disaster written all over it

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brian Perry, Dec 11, 2001.

  1. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    One of the trailers I saw last night at the showing of Ocean's Eleven was that of I Am Sam, the latest Sean Penn effort. While Sean is arguably among the greatest actors alive, this movie looks terrible. He plays a mentally retarded father who, according to the movie, has the intelligence of a 7 year old. He stands to lose his daughter due to his inability to care for her. Most of the trailer consisted of Penn (over)acting like, basically, a seven-year-old kid. My main thought was that based on what we see in the trailer, he should allow others to assume the care for his daughter, as he can barely function himself. There are a lot of one-liners thrown in to tug at your emotional side ("all you need is love," etc.), and it just felt painful to watch.
    Anyone else with thoughts on this movie?
     
  2. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    "Hello, my name is Sean Penn. Today, I will be playing a mentally retarded person... GIMME AN OSCAR!"

    Which is about the same reaction I had to the trailers for K-Pax and A Beautiful Mind. I'll probably wind up seeing I Am Sam, because Penn and Pfeiffer really can be pretty good, but I am wary.
     
  3. Craig S

    Craig S Producer

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    Yeah, this definitely sounds like an Oscar grab by Penn. Disappointing. The movie doesn't look that good, but supposedly Penn is getting serious Oscar buzz from his role.
     
  4. Ryan Peter

    Ryan Peter Screenwriter

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    It looks a little (or maybe a lot) manipulative, but definitely better than The Other Sister. Box office disaster? It ain't a friggin special effects movie.
    Jason: [​IMG]
     
  5. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    At least The Other Sister was hilarious:

    "NO! Stop Right There, Buster!" or something like that.
     
  6. Tyler Ruggeri

    Tyler Ruggeri Stunt Coordinator

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    I saw a preview of I Am Sam last night (see my full comments in the other thread I just posted) and while I was skeptical after seeing the trailer as well, I have to say the movie exceeded my expectations. It isn't great, but definitely worthwhile. In other words, don't knock it before you see it.

    Tyler Ruggeri
     
  7. Seth Paxton

    Seth Paxton Lead Actor

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    The trailer implied to me that the film might be a little manipulative or formula, but that Sean Penn was going to handle his character with the same skillful depth he does all characters.

    In fact I found some of the subtle moments in the trailer the more telling of Penn's art. It's likely that it won't be the "retarded, ham fisted" angle helping his case, but instead his ability to keep his character a bit distant from such moments that would get recognition.

    I look forward to seeing it simply because of his presence. Truly one of the best actors currently working (just see Before Night Falls as an example).
     
  8. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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    I thought Seth was going to say it but he didn't. Jeffrey Wells at reel.com has seemed fairly warm to this film, and I don't exactly take him as the type to go for some soppy, manipulative piece. Can't say I've seen anything for this film yet.

    But you know what the film Bowfinger had to say about these kinds of roles...
     
  9. John Spencer

    John Spencer Supporting Actor

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    So are you saying Penn is playing Buck the Wonder Slave?
     
  10. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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    Since when did Sean Penn care about getting an Oscar?

    He never shows up to the Academy Awards and takes every chance he can to knock Hollywood and the glorification of it's actors.
     
  11. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

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  12. Jay E

    Jay E Cinematographer

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    I have some reservations about this film since the director is also responsible for "The Story of Us", "Stepmom" & "Corina, Corina", none of which held any interest for me.

    However I'm a big Sean Penn fan so I'll just wait and see.
     
  13. Edwin Pereyra

    Edwin Pereyra Producer

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  14. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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  15. ShawnF

    ShawnF Stunt Coordinator

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    Ughhhhh. I saw the trailer the other night. This is going to be one of those movies that my wife is going to say, "I really want to see that" every time a commercial comes on TV.
     
  16. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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  17. Mark Cappelletty

    Mark Cappelletty Cinematographer

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    I saw it last week and while it's about 20 minutes too long and a bit sappy at times (much in the same way "Life as a House" was), it's still pretty good. Sean Penn and Doug ("Green Mile") Hutchinson are particularly strong. Just because the trailers are bad doesn't mean the movie is bad either (worst trailer seen this weekend: Bad Company).

    The Beatles stuff is a little heavy-handed by the by.
     
  18. SteveGon

    SteveGon Executive Producer

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    I guess this is as good a place to post this as any.
    I just saw I Am Sam today and I want my .99 rental fee back! Bleah. Could this movie have been more obvious and uninvolving? Jessie Nelson, would you please stop making movies?
    You know what? I don't even feel like finishing what I had to say about this dreck. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  19. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    Hehehe, that just sums it up right there. And people wonder why Ebert writes sloppy reviews sometimes, imagine having to sit through dreck like this once a week and come up with something interesting to say about it. [​IMG]
    I haven't seen it, but it actually looks OK to me... but they seem to want to make us think that Sam can take care of a daughter, something I had a hard time buying, at least judging by the trailer.
    /Mike
     
  20. Mark Pfeiffer

    Mark Pfeiffer Screenwriter

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