Cooper Hoffman, Gary Valentine, Alana Kane discussed on Pop Culture Happy Hour


Get right into it. Now licorice pizza is a Shaggy narrative that's got little plot, mostly vibes. It's 1973 in the valley, Cooper Hoffman plays 15 year old Gary Valentine, a cocky child actor who's quickly aging out of show business. At school, he meets 25 year old Alana Kane, played by Alana haim, where she's working as a photographer's assistant on picture day. And immediately he asked her out on a date. She agrees, but the two develop an unusual complicated dynamic, which we will definitely get into. Because there's not really much of a plot here, just a few things that happened throughout the movie. Gary and his mom Anita, played by Mary Elizabeth Ellis, start a business selling water beds and hire Alana as an employee. I want to briefly toys with the idea of becoming an actress and goes out to dinner with an oddball actor named Jack Holden, played by Sean Penn, and meets one of his friends, a director, played by Tom Waits. A water bed delivery turned into an epic hours long excursion involving Barbra Streisand's boyfriend and hairdresser John Peters, who's played by Bradley Cooper. There's also Benny safdie as a political candidate with a secret and John Michael Higgins as the owner of the Mikado hotel and restaurant. That's another thing we will definitely talk about and have some things to say about later on. And of course, as we mentioned earlier, Paul Thomas Anderson directed and wrote the screenplay. So Glenn, what did you think of licorice pizza? Yeah, you nailed it. This is the most shapeless and Shaggy film I've ever really enjoyed. Now people say that Shaggy is a Paul Thomas Anderson thing, and it can be a PTA thing, but it's not always. I tend to be fans of his films that have a bit more structure, especially if they reveal themselves to you at the end. There will be blood and phantom thread. And Magnolia, especially has a structure, it just you don't really get it until the final reel. This film, you said vibes. That's what you get. Mood tone zeitgeist. This movie is. Burnt ochre shag carpeting. It's an avocado gold refrigerator. But you know, it's deeper than that of course, because it's not just set dressing. It's setting. I think this film goes out of its way to just merely assert the fashion the hair of the cars, the design, the water, bettie Ness of it all. But it seems impatient to get you to look past that at the characters. So that's why I think it's doing as much as it's doing to make everything feel lived in. There is something kind of sooty and smoggy and grimy. There's a lens flare for days. There's a funk. In every sense of the word to this movie that you can practically smell. I think it's important that the characters look like normal people, right? This is LA, but it's the surface street LA that the beautiful people drive over on their way to and from auditions. I will say, the sensibility of this film got out ahead of me a few times, went to places I couldn't quite follow. And that started pretty early. The notion that Alana would find this character of Gary in any way intriguing or special based on their first interaction, when he's just, as you say, he's just another precocious smarmy child actor..

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