Thursday, February 27, 2014

A Tribute to Great Film (During Academy Award Week 2014): Groundhog Day (1993)

Part of Academy Award week is also about honoring great film, and what better time than pay tribute to recently departed Harold Ramis, and his greatest achievement Groundhog Day.  Sadly this film had 0 Oscar nominations, and the only award group, which saw its true potential was BAFTA (the British Academy Awards).  The film only had one BAFTA nomination for Best Original Screenplay, but it won.  Groundhog Day is a film that over the years has gained a cult following, and become one of the most well regarded films of all time.

The film centers around Phil Connors a weatherman, who goes to report on the Groundhog seeing his shadow, but ends up living the day over and over again.  The mix of humor, and the reality of everyday life is blended perfectly.  Ramis wrote and directed the film, and got one of the funniest men his long time working partner Bill Murray to star.  

Ramis and Murray worked on at 6 plus films together, but feuded for the last years 20 or more years of their lives.  Ramis was never better than when he worked with his pal, and Groundhog Day was the pinnacle of their creative work.

Some of my favorite quotes from the film are:

"This is one time where television really fails to capture the true excitement of a large squirrel predicting the weather."

"You want a prediction about the weather, you're asking the wrong Phil. I'll give you a winter prediction: It's gonna be cold, it's gonna be grey, and it's gonna last you for the rest of your life."

"This is pitiful. A thousand people freezing their butts off waiting to worship a rat. What a hype. Groundhog Day used to mean something in this town. They used to pull the hog out, and they used to eat it. You're hypocrites, all of you!"

Groundhog Day is a perfect film because it blends the deeper meaning of life, with one of the most pointless/mundane  activities in America, does the Groundhog see its shadow or not.  Many swear by this superstitious routine, and the daily routine of life, but its the way you live your life that matters.  Take risks, and find your true talents, but above all make em' laugh.

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