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April 01, 2008

My Blueberry Nights

My-blueberry-nights Critical darling auteur Wong Kar Wai may have a knack for luscious cinematic compositions, but his limited narrative sensibilities hobble this scattershot romantic drama. Singer Nora Jones makes an unflattering acting debut as Elizabeth, a relationship refugee turned vagabond who blunders into Jude Law's romantic reverie when she enters his character Jeremy's New York diner. Rather than create a character, Jude Law relies on his bag of stock behaviors as the person that Elizabeth corresponds with on her cross-country road trip that takes up most of the superficial story. A scene-stealing sub-plot with David Strathairn as an alcoholic cop and Rachel Weisz as his tramp of a wife serves mainly to distract from film's off-key pop-culture melodrama. Natalie Portman gives a hit or miss performance as Leslie, an accent-slurring Las Vegas poker pro who hoodwinks Elizabeth whose lack of common sense makes her an unsuitable protagonist.      
Rated PG-13, 90 mins. (C-)

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