Skip to content

Liberal Arts

December 23, 2012

Liberal Arts Movie Poster

Josh Radnor wrote, directed and starred in this film. The movie works well but you can feel the “writing” all over it. He really “wrote” this film. There are speeches about hyperbole, combating loneliness and Twilight. I appreciated the idealism but it never comes across as natural because of the writing touches. Give Radnor a couple more films and I think he will be able to incorporate his passions into a naturalistic script.

Liberal Arts Olsen and Radnor

The movie centers around a 35-year old man who returns to his college to attend a professor’s retirement party. While at the school he meets a virginal, readily available and precocious student and they quickly form a bond. Their bond involves classical music, writing letters and literature. There is an interest but there is also a 19 year age difference that isn’t helped by the long distance. Elizabeth Olsen is the main reason this film works. She has a way of seeming totally effortless while doing many things. In this film she has to be young, smart, advanced and still a teenager. She does it all with aplomb and you can understand why Josh cast her in the role.

Liberal Arts Elizabeth Olsen

The film strikes a chord because I received a BA in Literature from FSU in 2005. I know what it is like to walk around on a college campus with an inflated literary ego and several books in my bag. I’d have discussions about Shakespeare and wonder why nobody understood my Bartleby the Scrivener quotes. When I graduated I was sent off into the world to further my love of literature. Instead, I ended up in a really bad band and was working as a bouncer in a bar. I eventually started teaching, moved to Korea now live in Atlanta. My degree kept me from staying in one place too long and much like The Hobbit has created an unexpected journey. However, unlike Radnor’s film I’ve never said stuff like this “aren’t you romanticizing youth” or New York with classical music is better.”

Liberal Arts is a fine film. Radnor will find his way. Elizabeth Olsen is fantastic.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: