THE DEVIL READ SALINGER
The literary world is filled with many famous authors who with their works build a crowd that follows them. Become a classic yourself and touch the lives of many people and generations around the world. Of course, the crazy quirks and obscure facts are many of them that add an air of mystery and intrigue to the real life behind the famous author. Such facts can be found in some really bizarre and peculiar ideas about her literary life, including Edgar Allan Poe who married his first cousin, who was then 13 years old. Ernest Hemingway was an experienced bullfighter, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle believed in supernatural legends, Charles Dickens was fascinated by hypnosis and many others. One such case can be found with the American author J.D. Salinger, who was famous for writing the novel Catcher in the Rye and its withdrawn state in the latter part of his life. While Salinger passed away in 2010, the secret of his seclusion is an interesting point, adding an extra layer of intrigue to the author’s myth … to this day. Now IFC Films and director Philippe Falardeau present the time of the aspiring writer Joanna Rakoff, who works with the film at Salingers Verlag My Salinger year. Does the film delve into the mystery behind Salinger’s withdrawn life, or does it not provide context in its report “based on a real life”?
Joanna Rakoff (Margaret Qualley) takes a sabbatical from college in California and travels to New York City to explore the area. She soon falls in love with the lively scene and the culture that feeds her ambition to become a writer. Joanna leaves school and her boyfriend behind and is about to start her new life. She got a job at a literary agency run by Margaret (Sigourney Weaver) who owned the author J.D. Salinger (Tim Post) represents. Joanna is unfamiliar with the writer’s work and is overwhelmed by his legacy. His job is to open stacks of fan mail every week that are sent to the agency asking for Salinger’s response. However, Joanna is strictly forbidden to answer the letter or to pass it on to Salinger himself, who remains withdrawn from the rest of the world and wants to continue to do so. Joanna makes a new friend in Don (Douglas Booth), an aspiring fellow writer, and begins to understand the literary business. Over time, however, she begins to question her decisions and loses touch with her creative passion as she engages with the demanding job and her personal life.
THE GOOD / THE BAD
I’ve worked in a bookstore for over fifteen years and have seen a variety of writers come and go. See the rise and fall of a host of popular bestsellers and emerging authors. Of course, my fellow booksellers and I have read many classics and selected one or two of the authors who are behind them. Explore the crazy quirks and facts about their lives that some of the public may not be aware of. I’ll be the first to admit that even though I’m J.D. Salinger and all of his work, I still haven’t read Catcher in the Rye. Yes that is true. Of course, I read the classic novel’s recap and all of the internal themes and messages found in popular story, including youth alienation and loss of innocence found in the main character of the protagonist Holden Caulfield, but me actually, ‘I sat down and read the book myself, though almost every public school system used Salinger’s novel as a recommended reading list. I just can’t believe I haven’t read the novel yet. I may have to someday. As I looked past that point, I knew a little about Salinger’s life and that he was a little withdrawn, but I was a little curious as to why.
Maybe that’s why I was a little interested in seeing My Salinger Year, a 2021 drama film about the time of a young woman who works for Salingers Verlag. To be honest, I really didn’t hear much about it before I saw it in theaters. There wasn’t a lot of “buzz” on the various movie / movie websites I visit frequently. So I actually came across it while looking in Fandango on one of my days off when I was planning to go to my local movie theater that day. When I read the movie’s synopsis and watched the movie’s trailer, I was definitely interested in seeing this movie, especially since it looked like it was going to reveal some of the secrets behind J.D. Cover the Salinger. So I took the opportunity and decided to buy a ticket for the film. And what did I think of it? Well, it is one of those endeavors that a good rental is, e.g. My Salinger year definitely has heart and appeal, but lacks depth in his own story and insight into the seclusion of Salinger himself. Of course, it’s a decently good film, but one that’s framed (and structured) enough to stand out as a Turns out a bit predictable and devoid of substance.
My Salinger year The director is Philippe Falardeau, whose previous directorial work includes films such as It’s Not me, I swear! The good lie, Monsieur Lazhar. With his background in more indie / lesser-known filmography, Falardeau seems like a suitable choice to lead a project like this. Approach the film with a sense of intimacy and sincerity. In a nutshell, Falardeau has the “smaller” feel (akin to an independent budget feature) that (in a good way) has many quirks throughout and gives the film a reasonable sense of self-discovery. He focuses the lens on Joanna Rakoff as he delves head first into her job at the literary agency, trying to strike a certain kind of balance between work and personal life. It’s an ancient storytelling that looks like a “double-edged” sword (more on that below), but I figured it would be. So it didn’t bother me that much. Finding Falardeau directing light and character-based focus to make My Salinger Year easy to digest and almost feels a bit like a bit of “comfort food”. Also, it was a bit cool to see that the literary world, including Salinger’s presence in the film, is the main focus of the film when we (the audience) follow Joanna’s journey back to her time at the agency; Check out the strict operations of the business, including the dozen of fan mail sent to writers and manuscripts from aspiring writers. In addition, the running time of the film, which is one hour and forty-one minutes (101 minutes), is relatively short, and Falardeau gives the film an airy feel. never really haul (at least in my opinion). Overall, I felt that Falardeau was and was making a capable director for this project My Salinger year a bit of redux in some of his endeavors, but nonetheless came out as a remarkable find to observe the feature with a quantitative charm.
In his presentation My Salinger year is not really noticeable, but has a distinct charm of realism and a peculiarity for the overall feeling of the film. Falardeau and his filmmakers may not be that glamorous or high-end production value, but they work within the movie’s budget and definitely make it. reinterpreting the setting of New York City (around the 1990s) and giving the film a sense of realism. Everything that is presented in the backdrop of the film definitely works and is pleasing to the eye throughout the entire feature film. The behind-the-scenes team behind the scenes, such as Elise de Blois (production design), Claude Tremblay (art direction), Léa-Valérie Létourneau (set design) and Patricia McNeil (costume design), undoubtedly deserve credit for making The Set is pleasant with a sort of “even keel” / industry standard for a film project like this one. After all, the film’s score, which was composed by Martin Leon, is a relatively good film that contains a combination of soft emotional dramatic moments and quirky elements that exude a bit of that little “indie” feel.
There are problems within the company of this film that make it up My Salinger year a bit shallow and not completely encompassing the narrative of what it is trying to tell. Perhaps the only major criticism I have of the film, despite the story being told, is that feels terribly similar to 2006 The devil Wears Prada. If you look at the two storylines … they are pretty similar; Finding a story about a young aspiring woman who engages in an area she doesn’t know much about and who also has to deal with a distant boss and her own personal problems, including a friend. Basically you are just changing the fashion world and some famous designers out The devil Wears Prada and just transplant the literary world and some famous authors into it My Salinger year. Because of this, the script of the film seems a little too familiar to me. Adapting many similar “beat-for-beat” storylines and scenarios to the 2006 film; Manufacturing My Salinger year pretty formulaic and predictable. So I guessed a lot about what would happen in the movie before it actually happened, and (mostly) I guessed right. Despite attempts to create something different, My Salinger Year appears as a kind of “knock-off” version of The devil Wears Prada.
Even looking beyond that, the film tries to clearly define certain emotional beats found in the narrative and certain plot points in some of its characters. This is a combination of the script for the film and the direction of Falardeau (he does double duty on this project) that creates a lot of surface-level material throughout the film, although the story goes a little deep in the personal lives of its characters (both major as well as minor). So the fabric is provided My Salinger year leaves some to be desired, especially regarding Joanna’s personal life, the relationship between Margaret and Daniel, and in Salinger’s life. Speaking of which, the secret behind Salinger’s seclusion is not being investigated as I thought the film would work. Sure, it lays the foundation and we (as viewers) get excerpts from the isolated life of the infamous author, but we never quite understand why this scenario takes place in the background of the film. Of course, I know there’s a documentary out there in 2013 called Salinger that discusses more on this topic, but one would think that this topic would be in the foreground rather than in the background. I knew the film would focus on Joanna’s journey and time at the agency, but a little more insight into Salinger’s life and path could have been more beneficial … at least in my opinion.
There are also a few times that Falardeau’s direction gets a little too carried away, with some sequences that turn out to be redundant and not really much beyond a few lines of context for characters. This is most notable in a fantasy / dream-like dance scene which, while I know where Falardeau is from, just seems completely out of place with the film, as if the director was trying to find an excuse to put such a scene in the movie to use to fill in the running time of the movie.
The occupation My Salinger year is pretty good for the most part, but what holds some of them back is the characterization of the film and how it prevents them (as characters) from being memorable and / or rounded. The main character of the film is of course the actress Margaret Qualley, who plays the central protagonist of Joanna Rakoff. Known for her roles in The remains, Fosse / Verdon, and once Once upon a time in HollywoodQualley has played slightly minor roles in her career but is in the spotlight My Salinger year. Of course, the young actress is ready for the job and offers good acting talent throughout her performance as Joanna. Though I could envision the role of Joanna in a few other actresses, including Lilly Collins. Even so, Qualley does a good job as Joanna. That being said, the character of Joanna (at least in the movie) is pretty much a generic and easy going young woman, whose youthful and naive demeanor acts as a beacon for the film’s dramatic moments as we watch her journey unfold throughout. It’s an everyday affair for a main character, and it certainly feels that way in this movie.
Behind her, the actress Sigourney Weaver acts as the anchor of the film in the supporting role of Margaret, the ice cream actress / head of the literary agency Jonna works for, and the most important “goalkeeper” for understanding “Jerry” (Salinger) work. Known for her work in the extraterrestrial Franchise as well User picture and Ghost huntersWeaver has proven herself to be a well-known actress throughout her career and is the seasoned veteran on this particular project. Of course, Weaver is up to the task and plays the character role of Margaret with a subtle fun in her character’s short sayings about her cold and detached temperament. Apart from that, the character of Margaret, much like Qualley’s Joanna, is still a little different from Meryl Streep’s persona of Miranda Priestly The devil Wears Prada. Even so, Weaver is solid in the film and anchors the feature to her on-screen presence as I found all of her scenes in the film to be great.
Actor Douglas Booth (Jupiter Ascending and Noah) proves a good supporting role in the character of Don, an aspiring young writer with whom Joanna finds a relationship. Booth’s acting is fine and I understand where the story went with the character, but Don is in My Salinger year conventionally comes out a little too much, which in similar rom-com dramas plays on the “friend relationship”. The rest of the cast, including actor Colm Feore (Thor and The Chronicles of Riddick) as Margaret’s close companion David, actress Seána Kerslake (Can’t finish, won’t finish and Dollhouse) as Jenny, actor Brian F. O’Byrne (Mercy Street and Million dollar baby) as Hugh, actor Yanic Truesdale (The wedding planner and Gilmore Girls) as Max, actor Hamza Haq (Look, Kool and transplantation) as Karl, actress Leni Parker (Street legal and 19-2) as Pam and actor Theodore Pellerin (Boy Erased and Family First) as an unnamed boy from Winston-Salem are delegated to smaller supporting roles. Of course, some have bigger roles than others, but most of the acting talents involved in this grouping get the job done with the material given to them. However, some additional insight into some of these could have helped explain certain key events.
In search of something promising in her life, Joanna Rakoff settles down with a literary agency and begins to understand more about what she wants in life, as well as some of the secrets that J.D. Salinger in the film concern My Salinger year. Director Philippe Falardeau’s latest film takes an interesting look at the life of a young woman, expanding themes such as identity and self-esteem, and creating the myth in one of the most withdrawn men in the literary world today. While the film finds its own rhythm, it feels like a copy of The devil Wears Prada) and some surface-level material, the film itself is still a smooth and easily digestible feature that has a lot to like thanks to its source material and cast. Personally, I thought this movie was somewhere between okay and good. It definitely piqued my interest as I was interesting, but it seems a bit formulaic and doesn’t quite get to the level the movie wants to be … like something’s holding its back. Even so, it’s one of those films that has had a serious feeling since then. Therefore, my recommendation for this film is a cheap “Rent it”, because despite its flaws it should be seen at least once for all of its cinematic prose. Finally, My Salinger year as a healthy feeling of young adults grappling with passions and responsibilities that, while not giving much insight into Salinger’s personal life, make the elusive author’s legacy a little mystical.
3.6 out of 5 (Rent It)
Published on: March 5, 2021
Reviewed on: March 29, 2021
My Salinger year Lasts 101 minutes and is rated R for language and some sexual cues