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Sideways (2004)

Sideways (2004)

Paul GiamattiThomas Haden ChurchVirginia MadsenSandra Oh
Alexander Payne


Sideways (2004) is a English,Armenian,French movie. Alexander Payne has directed this movie. Paul Giamatti,Thomas Haden Church,Virginia Madsen,Sandra Oh are the starring of this movie. It was released in 2004. Sideways (2004) is considered one of the best Comedy,Drama,Romance movie in India and around the world.

A week before his friend Jack is to be married, best man Miles and the prospective groom head off to wine country for a week of fun, relaxation and - of course - wine drinking. Miles is the oenophile and does his best to teach Jack a bit about the art of appreciating great wine. All Jack cares about is drinking and carousing, something he accomplishes when he meets the attractive Stephanie at one of the vineyards. Miles is something of a sad sack, a high school English teacher who is a failed writer at heart. He has yet to get over the fact that his wife has divorced him and that she has remarried and he now faces that nerve racking wait for word from a prospective publisher. Miles has an opportunity to start anew when he meets Stephanie's friend Maya but when he let's slip that Jack is about to be married any hope of a relationship seems to be lost.


Sideways (2004) Reviews

  • Excellent, one can say, perfect


    I had known of Sideways for a long time now. Being the huge film fan that I am, I remember always seeing it get mentioned in many message boards, or websites, or critics' best-of-the-decade lists. It wasn't until now that I saw it, and the reason is because I recently saw Payne's new film The Descendants and I fell in love with it. It wasn't just his simple writing, but his direction, the feel that he gave it. Sideways was another gem, and an even better one. This could be called a dramedy in many ways, a comedy/drama. There are many films these days getting released that could be labeled in those two genres, and yet Sideways makes it look easier than The Descendants even. What we have here is a brilliant script all around, fully fleshing out these characters. And the investment I had with Giamatti... enormous. I was on this ride with him, I felt his pain, his anger, his awkwardness when confronted with aggravating or tense situations. I found myself telling him things on the screen, and even staying at the edge of my seat in a funny situation he is put in by his friend near the end. Whereas The Descendants lived on it's script through a lot of quiet moments, Sideways blends in simple, subtle moments with really incredible dialogue. The dialogue between the two was the main difference, and yet Sideways is very much of the feeling one is put in. I want to say the ensemble cast is fantastic. Church really made me question just how much of a friend he was, and yet still made him completely sympathetic and be able to be understood. As for Virginia Madsen... I felt like I was also falling for her like the lead. Some of her scenes, especially the conversations between her and Giammatti, she plays incredibly. She makes you feel the likability of her character, and yet also feel the sensuality and the vulnerability that she is pushing through with her shared desire. She was fantastic. Giamatti is fantastic as the disappointing lead, and although he always seems to play these sort of characters, he knows what to do to make them completely work. Overall, extremely satisfied with this, and still here is the unique touch of real feeling for the characters that I witnessed in the Descendants. How could I not love this? Payne's film pushes through the screen what can only be described as an incredibly real connection, a connection that I honestly don't witness very often with comedies.

  • A Buddy Film that Lingers Like Fine Wine.


    It's been a while since I saw a film that depicted buddies on the down-and-out meeting (or running away from) their destinies that had performances so nuanced as this film. In an age when movies have to appeal to a young crowd who is not that attentive to detail and prefers its visuals fast, furious, and simple, SIDEWAYS slows down a couple of paces and, like the wine ubiquitously present throughout, allows its own story to breathe and take its lovely, wistful taste as we follow the two main characters played by Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church in their "weekend of debauchery." One couldn't imagine two more mismatched people -- Giamatti plays an intellectual introvert while Haden Church plays an irresponsible goon still trapped in high school -- but one senses that these have been friends for a long time, even if their friendship is held on a tenuous string. But friends they are, and it's described in this trip that begins in Southern California as they drive up the coast and enter wine country, where they meet two women, Virginia Madsen and Sandra Oh, equally different, both a complement to the men and with whom the men pair up with. The fact that the Madsen/Giamatti pairing is tentative while the Oh/Haden Church pairing is essential to the back story of wine: where the latter display their affair "all over the place, commonly" like Cabernet, the former is defined closer to Pinot, and in one heartbreaking scene, both Giamatti and Madsen define their characters through the evolution of wine throughout the years. And it's this one scene that makes the movie. Madsen conveys so much more with so little and should have been more than an Oscar nominee: her short scene lingers far beyond her last appearance in the movie, and makes us want for more of her soulfulness. She is able to bring out the less seen, more fragile side of Giamatti's character and have him take the decision he takes at the end of the movie, and the fact that Payne does not take us into that scene is indicative of that power their tentative yet intense coupling has seared into our minds: this is romantic eroticism at its finest, lasting equally much longer than the more torrid affair Haden Church and Oh exhibit. There is no need to see that final scene, because as private as it is, we know that they will consummate their union beautifully and move on into the future since they are perfect for each other. Beautiful, saturated colors and light that evokes films of the 70s, long takes, edgy humor mixed with touching introspection, SIDEWAYS is a visual treat that gets better with subsequent viewings.

  • Alexander The Great


    What a refreshing adventure great writing really is. Through the mind, heart and soul of a filmmaker like Alexander Payne you can enter forbidden territory and dive into experiences that, at first glance, seem so far removed from our own. Little tales with enormous, universal implications. Paul Giamatti, Thomas Haden Church and Virginia Madsen jump out of the screen and as soon as the movie ends we find them sitting next to us. We get home and find them waiting for us there, we even find them on the mirror looking back at us. This is the sort of movie going experience that will never get old. Its strength is in its truth. You may not like it, you may even resent it. Good, that's what art is all about. It provokes you. It motivates and inspires you. And as if all that wasn't enough, it entertains you it amuses you, it gives you one hell of a great time. I want another Payne soon in a theater near me.

  • Keeping Everything Bottled Up.


    Sad, disillusioned and depressed middle school teacher/aspiring novelist Paul Giamatti takes his best friend (Thomas Haden Church) to California's wine country for one last week of freedom before he marries. Church is on the prowl though and extremely horny as he wants nothing more than to sleep with women before his wedding. Thus these two opposites (who are more alike than they appear on first glance) have all sorts of adventures and misadventures. They meet two women (Virginia Madsen and Sandra Oh) and immediately take an interest in them. Divorcée Giamatti is shyly attracted to Madsen while Church falls in lust real quick with Oh. What is going to transpire over this week? Outstanding direction by Alexander Payne (who is one of the better "new-age" film-makers) knows which comedic and dramatic buttons to push here. His screenplay (which he co-wrote with cohort Jim Taylor) is deeper than it appears on the surface. Just like "Election" and "About Schmidt", "Sideways" works because the characters are quirky and hilarious, but also vulnerable and real. The four leads are remarkable with Church stealing the show and Madsen doing the work of her life. Giamatti's quiet and heartfelt role makes you sympathize and care for this flawed man. An intelligent adult-themed comedy/drama that works from many angles. 4.5 out of 5 stars.

  • Giamatti was ROBBED!


    Sideways is a beautiful portrait of mid life disappointment. The backdrop is lovely California wine country, and the casting is flawless. Every single performance in this film is surprising, pitch perfect, and unusual. The movie has the remarkable ability to capture sadness and desperation in just the light that allows the audience to recognize the humor. The ending is satisfying but not too pat. In short, this is the best film of 2004. The standout performance in the film was Paul Giamatti's. I cannot believe he was passed over for an Oscar this year. He should have been nominated for American Splendor, and he definitely should have been nominated for Sideways. His performance was beautiful, romantic, heartbreaking and so human. Paul Giamatti, ignore the Academy! Every year they have less credibility. The people who know films and acting at all know that you are one in a handful of truly great actors working in Hollywood today.


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