I saw The Words with a friend last night–one who is a book lover like me. We both emerged from the theater in complete awe. Though the critical reviews for it are low, we loved it. It was beautiful, emotional, and (we thought) the story was engrossing.
It’s like Inception about books. It is a story within a story within a story. Dennis Quaid’s character has written a book, whose protagonist is Bradley Cooper’s character, who publishes a book using someone else’s writing (plagiarism…BIG no-no). This someone eventually comes on the scene and informs Rory (BC) that the book that made him famous was actually a true story. Someone complained that this is confusing. It’s not. Everyone watched Inception no problem. This is easier to understand. People just don’t like that it’s about books.
But for us, this fascinating community of people united by the written word, it’s a gem. The movie is about the power of words and how they affect us–how they can make us rejoice, or fear, or cry, or love. How when we write them, they are ours, and we don’t want anyone taking them from us. This power is something that we know as well as we know our best friend. It’s why we love books so much. The whole time I watched I thought, “Yes! Finally! Something for us! And about us!”
The story was, as I said, engaging and emotional. There are two different romantic couples, and their love stories we enough to make me green with envy! Bradley Cooper and Zoe Saldana were great together! Ben Barnes and his French lover were also beautiful. And then, when the inevitable conflict enters the story to strain their relationships, I had tears threatening to spill the whole time. The gorgeous music, I feel, contributed to a lot of this, as did my susceptibility to romantic plot lines. All that fell flat, I thought, were the last five minutes. I could have lived without them. Other than that, it was spot-on.
I think that it is a film that book lovers will love and appreciate as much as my friend and I did. We understand, a little better than the rest of the world, how powerful a bunch of letters strung together can be. You can read or write something that changes you, your world, and the world at large. Definitely a must-see for book people!