The Muse (1999)

PG-13   |    |  Comedy


The Muse (1999) Poster

With his career on the skids, a Hollywood screenwriter enlists the aid of a modern-day muse, who proves to test his patience.


5.7/10
10,270

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  • Shari Belafonte at an event for The Muse (1999)
  • Andie MacDowell and Albert Brooks in The Muse (1999)
  • Sharon Stone at an event for The Muse (1999)
  • Sharon Stone in The Muse (1999)
  • Rosanna Arquette at an event for The Muse (1999)
  • Jacqueline Bisset and Emin Boztepe at an event for The Muse (1999)

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10 July 2009 | soccin
8
| Gets funnier every time I watch it
Brooks is the West-Coast doppelganger of Woody Allen, despite the fact that he's about twenty years younger & takes on characters decidedly white-bread Middle American Gentile. All of Brooks' movies are about him entering a critical transition period of life (or death). Like Allen's films, his variations on this familiar theme range in quality. 'The Muse' is a solid effort. Most Brooks films have funny zingers; this one has a whole filmful plus a clever story to boot, and a big-budget cast. The more you know about Hollywood and the motion picture industry (I recommend 'The Big Picture' by Epstein), the more true-to-life you understand the film to be, and thus the funnier the jokes become.

I'm not sure why it did poorly, and reading others' comments yields little insight. All I can say is that Brooks is never a fully sympathetic character--he is always at least partly to blame for his predicament--never quite the "aw-shucks" underdog. At least this time he and Johnson introduce other characters who are even more sympathetic to generate audience goodwill. Not to mention that the two leading ladies are both stunningly good-looking. Plus the whole Hollywood self-referencing is a lot of fun. Bottom line is, I believe that this is among the best of Albert Brooks' films. It has many winning qualities which permit it to transcend the Brooks formula. It shares a certain affinity with another wry comedy, "Being There"; both are stories about people being drawn in by the mysterious among us.

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