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Hyde Park on Hudson

May 1, 2013

Hyde Park on Hudson movie poster

Bill Murray is an enigma prone to acts of randomness like running bases at Cubs games, calling Kelly Lynch’s husband when Roadhouse is on cable and popping up in the strangest of places (inside a tree in Get Smart)  He appears in amazing films like  Ghostbusters, Ed Wood, Groundhog Day, Caddyshack, Rushmore, Life Aquatic, Lost in Translation and Royal Tenenbaums. However, he will show up in Osmosis Jones, Larger Than Life, The Man Knew Too Little, Passion Play and Garfield  He should have received an Academy Award nomination for Kingpin and his cameo in Zombieland was a highlight of a film full of highlights.  When I watched the trailer for Hyde Park on Hudson I was ready to proclaim it is the greatest film ever. Murray is known for his unexplained exploits so the fact that he was playing a president who got the United States through the depression and a massive war seemed perfectly normal.

Hyde Park on Hudson Bill Murray

The majority of my excitement died down as the film started. Hyde Park on Hudson doesn’t know what it is. It is a snapshot of history that meanders,  switches narratives and doesn’t leave you with much. You find out that FDR had a multitude of mistresses, pushed hot dogs on kings and loved stamps. The scenes between Samuel West’s King and Murray are highlights that make you wish the movie would have been these two sitting in a room talking while Eleanor and the Queen engage in uncomfortable small talk.

Despite the oddities of Hyde Park on Hudson it allows you to spend time with the elusive Murray. The eccentricity of the film allowed me to develop a theory as to why Murray was in it.

You ready for a wonderfully untrue yet totally believable theory?

One day Murray was bored so he decided to visit his Rushmore costar Olivia Williams on the Hyde Park on Hudson set. Murray’s charming demeanor and copious amounts of scotch endeared him to the director of the film. The director jokingly offered him a role and Murray replied “Yes. Want more Scotch?” When the booze exited the director’s bloodstream he quickly realized his conundrum. He fired the man playing FDR, told Laura Linney she was no longer the star and had the writer edit the entire script to Murray’s liking. What followed was a mixture of disjointed moments, a weird driving scene and more Scotch.

Sidenote: look at the poster. I bet it was originally just Linney. However, they captured a wonderful picture of Murray on the set and they photo shopped him in.

Don’t watch Hyde Park on Hudson. Watch the trailer then pop in Life Aquatic and enjoy the Murray.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Sweet Sugar permalink
    May 8, 2013 2:37 pm

    This movie poster communicates: “Behind every cheeky man is a strong woman who makes sure he keeps it together.” Am I close?

    • May 8, 2013 2:43 pm

      It is more like “behind every good woman is Bill Murray getting saucy with other good women.”

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